The White House recently revealed new details regarding United States President Joe Biden's two major vaccine mandates as the policies are facing widespread criticism and opposition from many Americans.

The situation came after Tuesday when the Biden administration asked a federal appeals court to reinstate a mandate that ordered private businesses to require their workers to get vaccinated against the coronavirus or submit to regular testing. The Democrat's request is to remove a previous ruling that temporarily blocked one of the House's signature policies that would take effect in January.

Vaccine Mandate Details

Many Republican-led states filed legal challenges in opposition to Biden's vaccine mandate, gaining support for private employers and conservative groups. They all consolidated before a single court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit.

A different set of judges temporarily blocked the policy before the cases were merged this month, finding the Labor Department exceeded its authority. They argued that the department caused "economic uncertainty" and "upheaval" for businesses that "threatens to decimate their workforces," the Washington Post reported.

Biden's recent announcements include the requirements for businesses with at least 100 employees to subject their workers to vaccines or regular testing. The Democratic leader also ordered employers to pay for their workers' time off needed to get the inoculations. The new details also require businesses to mandate unvaccinated employees to wear face masks while in the workplace.

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The new announcement also requires employers to report and record various details, with more information that can be found in the detailed OSHA materials. Employers are required to comply with all items such as paid time, vaccination, and mask requirements by Dec. 5. However, testing requirements for unvaccinated workers are required by Jan. 4.

Additionally, the House said that the CMS is requiring healthcare workers in facilities participating in Medicare or Medicaid to be fully vaccinated with either Pfizer, Moderna, or the Johnson & Johnson vaccines by Jan. 4, the White House reported.

New Omicron Variant

The announcement comes as the United States is preparing to respond to the newly detected Omicron coronavirus variant that was first observed in South Africa. On Friday, the World Health Organization (WHO) classified the new variant as a "variant of concern."

Hours after the global health agency's designation, the Biden administration announced that the U.S. will, starting on Monday, restrict travel from South Africa and seven other African countries. While talking to reporters, Biden said on Monday that the U.S. federal government has decided to be extremely cautious of the new variant.

The Democratic leader said that while there is not much information regarding the new coronavirus variant, the American government is playing it safe. Biden said that he spent about a half-hour talking with his COVID team leader Dr. Anthony Fauci.

Harvard epidemiologist Michael Mina noted that cases of the Omicron variant were not detected in the U.S. shortly after its announcement. However, they noted that the "lack of detection doesn't mean absence of spread." The statement came after Fauci said over the weekend that it would not be a surprise if the new variant had already made its way to the United States, Vanity Fair reported.


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