Employers considering vaccine mandate for workers after FDA approval


SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A growing number of employers are requiring vaccination, especially after the FDA approved one of the three vaccines.

Some state employees have until October 17 to show proof of vaccination. While smaller businesses are asking the same, some business owners say it’s hard enough to get employees to come to work as it is.

Like many states across the region, Massachusetts is ordering all of the state’s Executive Branch employees to provide proof that they have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by October 17, or potentially get fired.

The FDA approved the Pfizer vaccine Monday, the first country in the world to do so. Now, some businesses are mandating workers get the shot. Although it’s not mandated at Nadim’s Downtown Mediterranean Grill in Springfield, the majority of the workers there are vaccinated.

Owner Nadim Kashouh said, “Out of the 23 employees that I have, I have one that is not vaccinated.”

The problem though, which has been an issue since last year, is finding people to work. Now the owner worries, if he mandates the vaccine, the process of finding employees will only get tougher.

Nadim said, “That’s the key. If I tell the one employee that he has to get vaccinated and he has to go, if he goes I can’t find anyone to replace him. That’s why I’m on the fence about it right now.”

In July, President Joe Biden announced that federal employees would have to get vaccinated or submit to strict safety protocols, and urged businesses to require employees to get the vaccine.

It’s yet to be seen how many businesses will require a vaccine. One thing is for certain though, most COVID-19 protocols are back, like mask wearing and social distancing.

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