Gov. Baker defends his vaccine mandate and plans to thoroughly vet exemption requests

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (WWLP) – According to Governor Baker, 95 percent of executive branch employees have told the state whether they are vaccinated or not and if they have not received their shots, they did indicate to the Baker administration that they would would be seeking an exemption.

In an effort to get more people vaccinated against COVID-19, Governor Baker mandated that state troopers, prison guards, teachers and public transit operators get their shots by October 17th. State employees that did not want to get vaccinated had the opportunity to file for a medical or religious exemption.

The Governor said Monday that he’s still working on a system to vet those exemption requests, “It’s a two tier process and the goal there is to make sure they all get treated exactly the same.”

State employees that refused to answer the Governor’s mandate could face punishment as soon as this week. The Baker administration said they plan to reach out to those people and provide them more information about the vaccine before making any final decisions.

Now the Governor has been at odds with the MassGOP over this issue because GOP leaders believe the mandate is an infringement on people’s personal health decisions. Baker continues to stand by his statement that employees who deal with the public should be vaccinated to protect themselves and members of the community.

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