President Biden declared that the U.S was “free” from COVID-19 pandemic in July and during September, the number of people vaccinated with at least one dose was about 208 million. In comparison with September 2020 when the number of new infections of COVID-19 was 300% higher and more than the double for hospitalizations and deaths.
With this scenario, and as part of Biden’s action plan against COVID-19, the Department of Labor announced on September 9th, that OSHA will elaborate a vaccine mandate related to private companies with the objective of accelerating workforce vaccinations and alleviate the fight against the Delta variant and possible others.
The mandate will require that companies with more than 100 workers demand their employees to get vaccinated or present their negative test for the virus every week. This mandate will impact the biggest transportation fleets and companies.
Currently, there are companies, like Tyson Foods, that are already requiring and encouraging their workers (roughly 1,300 drivers) to get vaccinated. Its meat processing division was affected by COVID outbreaks.
Tyson Foods determined that all in-officer employees should be vaccinated by October 1 and the others workers until November 1. New workers should be fully vaccinated. Tyson will negotiate directly with union workers on this issue, since for now they are spared from this requirement.
Tyson has offered to their frontline workers $200 as an incentive to check their immunization status. At the moment, half of their drivers are vaccinated. In the case of Tyson’s drivers who not comply with the company’s vaccination requirement and aren’t protected by union will have to quit their jobs.