White House: No apparent disruption of the vaccine mandate

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Biden administration’s vaccine mandate for millions of federal workers appears to be working without any apparent …

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Biden administration’s vaccine mandate for millions of federal workers appears to be working without any apparent disruption to law enforcement, intelligence gathering or vacation travel.

On Tuesday, a day after the deadline for compliance, 92% of the 3.5 million federal workers covered by Biden’s mandate reported to the government that they were at least partially vaccinated, according to White House officials.

In total, 96.5% of employees have been considered in compliance with the policy, including through medical or religious exceptions that are still under evaluation. The rest are considered inconsistent, but officials stressed that “it is not a rock” and that workers will receive advice on getting vaccinated or applying for an exemption. Only then will termination be considered.

A breakdown of compliance by the federal agency was expected later Wednesday.

“We know vaccine requirements work,” White House Assistant Secretary of State Kevin Munoz said. “We hope our implementation sends the clear message to companies to move forward with similar measures that will protect their workforce, protect their customers and protect our communities.”

Since the introduction of the initial vaccine-or-test mandate this summer and then the more restrictive requirement without a test-out option in the fall, the White House has believed the federal government could serve as a model for the rest of the country. employers for how vaccinations could help shepherds with a faster return to normal.

White House officials say the most important lesson for companies from the federal experience is that when they take the first step toward the requirements, their workers will follow suit.

Figures from the Internal Revenue Service show how a mandate can drive up the vaccination rate. About 25% of the agency’s workforce only got a shot after Biden announced the mandate in September; now 98% are consistent.

Agencies with marginally lower vaccination rates tend to have a wide-ranging workforce, making training and advising on the benefits of vaccines – or even just the task of getting workers to report that they have already been shot – more difficult.

Several intelligence services apparently had at least 20% of their workforce unvaccinated by the end of October, the Republican rep said. Chris Stewart of Utah, member of the House Intelligence Committee.

Larry Cosme, president of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, said at about the same time that there are about 31,000 members from 65 federal law enforcement agencies in the association, and he estimated that 60% of them have been vaccinated.

A federal union in Florida sued last week, saying it was a violation of civil rights. The case is pending.

Some of the initial fears of vaccination status for the federal workforce stemmed from employees without access to state computers to obtain their vaccination certification. Some, like frontline security officers from the Transportation Security Administration, rarely use a government computer. Others are in the field or are simply late in responding to the survey or starting to be vaccinated.

The federal vaccination rate exceeds the vaccination rate for all Americans. About 82.2% of American adults, or more than 212 million people, have received at least one dose. Of those, about 71%, or over 183 million, are fully vaccinated.

Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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