The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued updated guidance Friday stating U.S. companies can mandate that employees in a workplace must be vaccinated against COVID-19 and there are no federal laws that can prevent it, Reuters reports.
In a statement posted on its website explaining its updated guidance, EEOC said employees can be required to be inoculated as long as employers comply with the reasonable accommodation provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act and other laws.
On top of that, employers may offer incentives to workers to be vaccinated, as long as they are not coercive, but the agency cautioned that a very large incentive could make employees feel pressured to disclose protected medical information in which case other federal, state and local laws may come into play.
Jonathan Segal, an attorney with Duane Morris in Philadelphia, noted that an employer should be able to offer a very large incentive- $500 for example- so long as employees are vaccinated by their own provider.
Majority of employers are reluctant to require workers to be vaccinated with only 9% of more than 700 employers surveyed by management-side law firm Fisher Phillips earlier this year saying they were considering mandating vaccines.