Can employers require COVID-19 vaccine? Law experts respond

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INDIANAPOLIS– Some employees are responding to IU Health’s mandate of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Starting September 1st, employees must be fully vaccinated or be terminated unless they’re approved for an exemption or deferral.

Many are wondering if this is legal.

Stephanie Hahn, an employment law attorney, says employers do have the right to enforce a vaccine requirement because of guidelines which outline the work environment must be safe for employees and customers alike.

If employees are able to work remotely, it’s unlikely employers could enforce a vaccine requirement.

However, if employees work closely with customers, Hahn says they have the right to require a COVID-19 vaccine.

“An employer is allowed to set the rules for the workplace, much like if someone comes to your home,” said Hahn. “You may think it’s unfair but I can guarantee you the folks that have to interact with individuals who have COVID-19 or do not want the vaccine think it’s not particularly fair their health is at risk because of their choices either.”

A protest is set to take place Saturday at Fairbanks Hall at 3 p.m.

Over 200 IU Health employees have stated they plan to attend.  

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