Second Appeals Court Backs Federal Employee Vaccine Mandate

A second federal appeals court has upheld the federal employee vaccine mandate.

A second appeals court has upheld the vaccine mandate for federal employees that was issued by President Biden last year.

A panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously said that federal employees cannot sue over the vaccine mandate and must instead challenge the mandate through the usual appeal channels available to the federal workforce through the Civil Service Reform Act (CSRA). In other words, federal employees would have to face discipline for refusing to get the COVID vaccine before they could appeal the decision administratively.

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals came to the same conclusion earlier this month when it upheld the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate.

The Biden administration initially said it would not reinstate the federal employee vaccine mandate but then also was petitioning the court to allow the mandate to be immediately reinstated.

According to Reuters, the Justice Department told the court that it should be allowed to immediately resume enforcing the mandate because it is “justified by the serious ongoing harm to the public interest and to the government.”

As of right now, the Biden administration has not issued any additional information regarding resuming enforcement of the federal employee vaccine mandate via the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force.

About the Author

Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of FedSmith.com. He enjoys writing about current topics that affect the federal workforce.