United States President Joe Biden's vaccine mandate will force companies to lay off thousands of workers who do not comply with the requirement by the deadline, straining an already struggling supply-chain workforce, said a major business group this week.
An influential trade group that represents an industry with nearly six million workers, the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors (NAW), is urging the federal government to delay a Dec. 8 deadline of the vaccine mandate. The requirement would require federal contractors to get vaccinated against the coronavirus infection.
Protest Against Vaccine Mandate
On Wednesday, the president and CEO of NAW, Eric Hoplin, sent a letter to Democrat Biden warning the president that if tens or hundreds of thousands of employees were to be fired due to the vaccine mandate, it would be nothing but devastating to Americans who are recently unemployed and their families as well as hitting the U.S. economy.
Members of the trade group include grocers, lumbers, florists, beer, wine, and various other distributors. Signed last month, Biden's executive order forces employees of contractors that do business with the federal government to get vaccinated against the coronavirus infection. The order did not give the option of regular testing to opt-out of being inoculated. The government's plan with the order is to prevent the spread of the disease, CNN reported.
The situation comes as a few hundred General Electric employees walked away from their jobs on Friday at a company facility located in Schenectady, New York. The incident was a protest of Biden's vaccine mandate that forces employees to either get vaccinated against the coronavirus infection or risk being terminated.
The recent demonstration is the latest in a series of opposition protests held by GE employees in several states since the company announced the vaccination mandate. It was announced last week by the company that it would join other large firms in enforcing Biden's vaccine mandate and gave workers a deadline of Dec. 8.
Dozens of people, including GE employees, protested on Wednesday just outside one of the firm's facilities in Lafayette, Indiana. Another 100 or so GE employees walked out of a plant in Greenville, South Carolina, on Thursday in protest of the vaccine mandate. Ohio has also reported some demonstrations by the company's workers, Fox Business reported.
On the other hand, Arizona's attorney general, Mark Brnovich, on Friday filed a request for a temporary restraining order to put a stop to Biden's vaccine mandate. In a statement where he announced the decision, Brnovich said that once a vaccine was administered, it could never be undone. The official said the vaccine mandate was one of the "greatest infringements" on a person's individual liberty, federalism, and the separation of powers by any administration.
In September, the state first sued Biden's previous measures in September that required federal workers and private-sector workers in businesses with more than 100 workers to be vaccinated or accept weekly testing. The order was expected to affect more than 100 million Americans nationwide.
"We've been patient but our patience is wearing thin and your refusal has cost all of us. This is not about freedom or personal choice. It's about protecting yourself and those around you," Biden said from the White House, defending his order, Fox News reported.