Can Employers Make People Get the COVID-19 Vaccine?

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In December, a nearly miraculous thing happened: people in the U.S. started to get a vaccine against COVID-19, the viral disease that disrupted every aspect of our lives in 2020.

But how will the availability of an injection to prevent people from getting sick change the relationship between workers and their employers? Most importantly – can your boss force you to get the shot?

Right now, it’s hard to say, because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) hasn’t fully approved the vaccine and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission hasn’t issued a ruling.

Typically, however, employers can require certain health measures, as long as they apply equally to all employees, and they allow exceptions as required under the Americans with Disabilities Act and those with religious objections.

Of course, because Oklahoma is an at-will state, employers can terminate almost anybody at almost any time without giving a reason. Unfortunately, that means workers who buck the system may find themselves without a job regardless.

At Johnson & Biscone, we will always fight for people when their bosses try to force them to do things that don’t make sense medically or that violate workers’ rights. If you think your company is going beyond what the law allows, give us a call at 405-232-6490. We would be glad to help you defend yourself.

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