It seems the tide has been turning against vaccine mandates.
And now one of the biggest and most unexpected names yet has dropped its own requirements for employees.
Starbucks Chief Operating Officer John Culver announced the major reversal Tuesday in a memo obtained by the Associated Press.
The company says the decision is driven largely by the recent Supreme Court ruling gutting President Joe Biden’s vaccinate-or-test rule.
Starbucks warned employees about the dangers of the omicron variant in early January. According to Culver’s original memo, the vaccine was “the best option we have, by far, when it comes to staying safe and slowing the spread of COVID-19.” While the company may still believe that is the best course of action, they are now allowing their employees to make that decision for themselves.
Since the Seattle coffee megacorporation has locations in cities across America, this reversal will impact communities from the coasts to the heartland.
The announcement undoubtedly comes as a welcome relief to those who would have otherwise lost their livelihoods as the deadline approached.
Fortunately, Starbucks is not alone in abandoning vaccine requirements.
General Electric’s own 174,000 employees, which far exceeds the 100-person vaccine mandate threshold set by the Biden administration, got their own good news last week with a major announcement from the company.
According to CNBC, General Electric suspended its own requirements on January 14. This company’s reversal also followed the decisive ruling from the high court.
While a spokesperson said workers were still encouraged to get vaccinated, it appears that nobody will be losing their jobs over a personal medical decision.
It’s not just private businesses dumping these mandates, either.
Several colleges in Virginia are now getting rid of vaccination rules previously imposed on staff.
Virginia’s WRIC reported that Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia State University and other schools are among the institutions that have dropped strict medical requirements for employees.
The move follows not only the Supreme Court decision, but an executive order from newly-elected GOP Gov. Glenn Youngkin axing a state mandate.
Nevada schools are also taking advantage of a December vote by state legislators to make the state’s emergency vaccine mandate temporary instead of permanent. According to the Nevada System of Higher Education Chancellor Melody Rose, the vote “eliminated ‘the legal basis for student vaccines to be a requirement for registration for classes.'”
With local lawmakers, businesses, colleges, much of the public and even Supreme Court justices rejecting harsh vaccine mandates, it seems the tide is now turning against would-be medical tyrants.
If this trend continues it won’t be long before places like California and New York, both still with strict COVID controls in place, are unrecognizable compared to the rest of America.
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