U.S. automakers agree to not enforce vaccine mandates on unionized staff


The three major automakers from the United States, namely Ford Motors, General Motors, and Stellantis N.V. (Chrysler) have announced that unionized employees are not obliged to get vaccinated.

Although vaccines are not being enforced, the United Auto Workers (UAW) and the automakers have agreed to implement mask mandates at work. They have also agreed that unionized workers would be asked to willfully report their vaccination status.

It is worth noting here that as per the rules issued by the Labor Department which have been upheld by the federal appeals court, all companies with 100 or more employees are required to enforce vaccine mandates or subject employees to weekly testing if they are not inoculated by January 4.

Jeff Zients, the White House COVID-19 correspondent said that vaccination mandates surpass work ethics since they also significantly raise vaccination rates and are simple to execute.

Despite the Biden administration requiring employers to necessitate vaccinations, the UAW has refused to agree to vaccine mandates. In this context, the President of the United Auto Workers Ray Curry stated that vaccination should be urged but also should remain an individual preference.

Stellantis declared that by January 5, it would require all its 14,000 salaried non-union employees in the United States to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The company claimed that approximately 80% of its salaried non-union U.S. workforce have self-reported being fully vaccinated.

Meanwhile, Ford revealed that the majority of its 32,000-person salaried workforce in the United States would be obligated to be vaccinated, with more than 84% of salaried employees are already reported to have been vaccinated.

In Canada, the Big Three confirmed that all autoworkers in the country would be bound to receive immunizations, however, it remains to be seen if this requirement is enforced for salaried employees in the U.S.

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