12 States Banning COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates and How They Affect Healthcare Workers


A dozen governors have signed legislation restricting COVID-19 vaccination mandates in their states, according to a Sept. 9 report from National Academy for State Health Policy.

Editor’s Note: This web page was updated on October 12 and will continue to be updated.

Arizona: On April 19, Republican Governor Doug Ducey issued an order prohibiting the state from requiring people to prove their COVID-19 vaccine status to enter a business, building or area or to receive a public service . However, healthcare facilities can request documentation on the COVID-19 vaccine status of patients, residents, employees or visitors.

On June 30, Mr. Ducey signed a bill requiring employers to provide reasonable accommodation to employees with sincere religious beliefs, practices or observances that prevent the employee from being vaccinated against COVID-19, at unless the accommodation places undue hardship on the operation of business. The bill allows healthcare establishments to require vaccination of employees.

Arkansas: On April 28, the state enacted a bill prohibiting the state, state political subdivisions, or public officials from requiring vaccination as a condition of employment. These agencies cannot discriminate or coerce people who refuse a COVID-19 vaccine by denying them opportunities for career advancement, salary increases, or insurance reductions.

Georgia: On May 25, Republican Gov. Brian Kemp said that no state agency can require proof of COVID-19 vaccination as a condition of state employment, doing business with the state, or receiving benefits. other rights granted by the State.

Florida: On April 2, Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis said companies were prohibited from requiring customers to verify a COVID-19 vaccination status or post-transmission recovery to access the business. As of September 16, the state will impose a fine of $ 5,000 on any public or private entity that requires proof of vaccination, News 4 Jax reported. Since requesting proof of vaccination is part of a vaccination warrant, some companies can pay millions of dollars in fines.

Indiana: On April 29, Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb signed a law prohibiting state or local governments from requiring anyone, including employees, to show proof of vaccination.

Montana: On May 7, Republican Governor Greg Gianforte signed a bill banning discrimination based on vaccination status. This includes prohibiting an employer or government entity from denying a person employment or discriminating against a person in compensation or in a condition or privilege of employment based on the person’s immunization status. In addition, a person may not be required to receive a vaccine that is authorized for use under an emergency use authorization or a vaccine that is tested for safety.

New Hampshire: On July 26, Republican Governor Chris Sununu signed a bill stating that employers can only mandate vaccination as a condition of employment when a “direct threat” exists. A “direct threat” is defined as a significant risk of substantial harm to the health or safety of the individual or of another which cannot be eliminated or reduced by reasonable accommodation. Public hospitals are exempt from the mandate

North Dakota: On May 7, Republican Gov. Doug Burgum signed a bill prohibiting state government entities from requiring a private company to obtain documents to verify an individual’s immunization status. The bill exempts healthcare facilities from the ban.

Oklahoma: On May 28, Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt issued an order prohibiting state agencies from requiring people to show proof of vaccination to enter public buildings. The ordinance does not apply to employees working in patient care facilities.

Tennessee: On May 25, Republican Governor Bill Lee signed a bill prohibiting any state agency, department, or political subdivision from requiring COVID-19 vaccines.

Texas: Governor Greg Abbott issued a decree October 11, banning any state entity, including private employers, from enforcing COVID-19 vaccination warrants. The ordinance states that “no entity in Texas” may impose vaccination on anyone, including an employee or consumer, who objects “for reasons of personal conscience, based on religious belief, or for reasons medical conditions, including a previous recovery from COVID-19. “

Utah: On March 16, Republican Governor Spencer Cox signed a bill prohibiting state agencies from requiring people to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment. However, the bill does not apply to employees who work in a medical environment and who must be vaccinated to perform the duties and responsibilities assigned to them.

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