It is disappointing, to say the least, that so many employers in California continue require all of their employees to be “fully vaccinated” or be fired, given that we have now known for quite a while that the MRNA vaccines don’t prevent infection or transmission, and they are also most definitely not risk free. Moreover, the same employers continue to routinely deny their workers’ medical and religious exemption requests in violation of California Fair Employment and Housing Act. According to a recent data, for instance, Marin County apparently only granted 11 such exemptions out of hundreds requested by their employees.
Many lawsuits for these unlawful exemption denials have already been filed all around the country. We also hope to be involved in as many such cases as possible, in order to participate in this extremely important fight against continuing, unscientific and unlawful coercion. We foresee that it will be particularly difficult for employers to justify denying an exemption to workers who are expected to work remotely, especially if they remote indefinitely. What rational basis can there be to insist that a worker, who never comes in physical contact with his co-workers or clients / customers, be vaccinated, and how is it that employer’s business?
Some employers deny exemption requests for political / partisan reasons. That is, they are already unhappy that the same employee chose not to get vaccinated, so now they are trying to make his life more difficult by unreasonably denying an exemption. If this type of spiteful motive is proven in court, it will make that employee’s case much stronger.
If you have or are about to request an exemption from vaccination requirement at your workplace, pay attention to your employer’s response. Any type of disagreement with your personal choice or unfounded skepticism of your need for an exemption can later be used to greatly enhance your case in court.
Employers should seriously consider exercising more flexibility with their vaccination rules and exemption requests. Employers should also consider being particularly flexible with those workers who have already had Covid and who have now proven to have robust natural immunity.