States mandating flu vaccine
In 2005, the Washington State Nurses Association won a federal court case against a hospital's mandatory flu shots for nurses. One weakness in the hospital's position was the lack of public policy favoring mandatory flu shots. WILL FORCED EMPLOYEE FLU SHOTS AFFECT EMPLOYEE MORALE?The court held that the hospital's unilateral imposition of flu shots violated the nurse's union's collective bargaining agreement, which required the hospital to bargain collectively with the union over all terms and conditions of employment. However, since the alleged 2009-2010 pandemic (which was not a real pandemic at all), hospitals around the country have been implementing seasonal and swine flu vaccine mandates for employees that risks changing policy in a way that could affect this argument in future cases. As many as 1/2 of healthcare workers say they don't want flu vaccines.We need to convince state legislators to enact laws giving all persons, including students, the right to refuse vaccines when doing clinical work in local hospitals.Presently, few states have statutory exemption laws for healthcare employees, and probably none have laws for students doing clinical work in local hospitals as part of their college curriculum.The information contained on NVIC's web pages is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be medical or legal advice.Those seeking medical or legal advice should obtain the services of a competent attorney, physician or qualified health care professional.
The federal government and about a dozen states have a Religious Freedom Restoration Act or equivalent legislation that requires government to use the least restrictive means to achieve a compelling state interest when imposing on the free exercise of religious beliefs.
While current thinking would consider vaccines to be a "compelling state interest," the "least restrictive means" would arguably not require that everyone be immunized, since the widely held "herd immunity" claims to protect all so long as most are vaccinated. law firms that handle vaccine injury and death cases: Maglio, Christopher and Toale--flu shots are deadly.
This may provide a basis for vaccine religious exemptions where these acts apply, in addition to federal civil rights law. If a hospital employee is injured by a flu vaccine, who is liable? Flu vaccine injury and death is solely a matter for the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, and not workman's compensation, as the federal program supersedes any state worker's comp laws.
These additional shots are required by the hospital or other institution, and may not be covered by state exemption laws.
However, Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act makes it unlawful for employers "controlling apprenticeship or other training or retraining" to discriminate against individuals based on religion and other factors, so students in healthcare curriculums have a federal right to refuse vaccines in their clinical work, for religious reasons, and if denied that right, may file an EEOC complaint alleging discrimination.
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