President Biden announced a new vaccine mandate for all federal employees and contractors this week as part of new stepped-up efforts by the federal government to get more people vaccinated to slow the spread of COVID-19.
In July, Biden announced new guidelines for the federal workforce that would require federal employees to either be vaccinated or be subjected to regular COVID tests. Just over a month later, the more stringent guidelines have now become a full mandate; federal employees must now get vaccinated or be subject to disciplinary action.
“If you want to work with the federal government and do business with us, get vaccinated,” the president said in a speech about the new COVID protocols his administration is putting in place.
He also placed the blame for the ongoing pandemic and rise in new Delta variant cases on those who have thus far refused to get the vaccine:
This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. And it’s caused by the fact that despite America having an unprecedented and successful vaccination program, despite the fact that for almost five months free vaccines have been available in 80,000 different locations, we still have nearly 80 million Americans who have failed to get the shot.
“We’ve been patient, but our patience is wearing thin. And your refusal has cost all of us. So, please, do the right thing,” he added.
In other words, the government has decided that everyone needs to be vaccinated to stop the pandemic, and it is setting the standard as one of the largest employers in the country on what it wants other companies to do to encourage Americans to get the COVID vaccine. As White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said, “Obviously the federal workforce is one of the largest in the country and we would like to be a model to what we think other businesses, organizations should do. The expectation is that if you want to work with the federal government or be a contractor, you need to be vaccinated unless you are eligible for one of the exemptions.”
What do FedSmith readers, most of whom are federal employees, think of the new vaccine mandate? Will it lead to more Americans getting vaccinated? Will it cause federal employees to leave their jobs?
The survey is now closed. You can read the results here: Strong Opposition to Mandatory COVID Vaccinations