Speaking in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, on Thursday, President Biden made clear what his priorities are, arguing that the “bigger story” isn’t “headlines and reports of mass firings,” but instead that the mandates for large businesses to vaccinate their workers are having some success.
These requirements work. And as a business round table and others told me when I announced the first requirement that encouraged businesses to feel they could come in and demand the same thing of their employees, more people are getting vaccinated. More lives are being saved. Let’s be clear: When you see headlines and reports of mass firings, and hundreds of people losing their jobs, look at the bigger story. I’ve spoken with Scott Kirby, CEO of United Airlines, who’s here today. United went from 59% of their employees to 99% of their employees in less than two months after implementing the requirement. 99%.
Biden: "When you see headlines and reports of mass firings, and hundreds of people losing their jobs, look at the bigger story…United went from 59% of their employees [vaccinated] to 99%…" pic.twitter.com/pTDLmTtDDP
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) October 7, 2021
Meanwhile, on October 4 The Hill reported:
Northwell Health, the largest health care provider in New York state, on Monday fired 1,400 of its employees who did not comply with the state’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate. … These employees represented almost 2 percent of Northwell’s workforce of more than 76,000 who are all immunized against COVID-19.
The Seattle Police Department may have to fire hundreds of officers if they don’t meet an Oct. 18 vaccination deadline. “As of Oct. 6, 292 sworn personnel had yet to provide proof of a COVID-19 vaccination,” Fox 13 reported in an article titled, “Seattle Police Department braces for mass firing of officers as hundreds have yet to show proof of vaccination.”
Yahoo News reported on September 25, “New York Hospitals Face Possible Mass Firings as Workers Spurn Vaccines,” adding, “In Buffalo, the Erie County Medical Center plans to suspend elective inpatient surgeries and not take intensive-care patients from other hospitals because it may soon fire about 400 employees who have chosen not to get vaccinated against the coronavirus.”
The White House declared in September:
The Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is developing a rule that will require all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workforce is fully vaccinated or require any workers who remain unvaccinated to produce a negative test result on at least a weekly basis before coming to work. OSHA will issue an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) to implement this requirement. This requirement will impact over 80 million workers in private sector businesses with 100+ employees.
An opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal noted in late September:
The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 authorizes OSHA to enact rules that are “reasonably necessary or appropriate to provide safe or healthful employment and places of employment.” But the Biden mandate is unreasonably and unnecessarily broad. As announced, it applies to all employees, even those who work at home, as millions have done during the pandemic. It’s simultaneously too narrow, failing to require vaccination for contractors, customers and other nonemployees who may be present at the work site.