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Bill aims to prevent vaccine discrimination at the workplace

Published: Apr. 12, 2021 at 6:32 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Legislation is circulating in the Wisconsin State Legislature aimed at protecting people who don’t want the vaccine.

The State Assembly has passed a bill that would stop businesses from requiring employees to get vaccinated. The bill has been in the works since January, and would prevent the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and Public Health Officials from requiring vaccinations or requiring someone to show proof of their vaccination.

Supporters of the bill say it’s unethical to require people to receive the shot, especially those who are concerned about vaccine safety.

“Really what I think it gets down to is it’s a private medical decision,” State Senator André Jacque (R - De Pere) said.

Those opposed believe passing this bill would downplay the importance of COVID-19 vaccines at this time.

“The bottom line is hospitals, nursing homes, employers who want to protect not only their employees but the vulnerable patients that they serve, shouldn’t be undermined by political legislation like this,” State Representative Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh) said. “I oppose the bill that prohibits employers from being able to mandate vaccination for their employees. You know, health care providers nursing homes, a lot of employers should have the right to determine how they best protect their employees and their patients.”

Right now, there are two bills on vaccine discrimination going through, No Individual Vaccine Mandate (Assembly Bill 23, passed 60-33) which was co-authored by Sen. Jacque, and No Employer Vaccine Mandate (Assembly Bill 25, passed 59-35).

Senator Jacque said bill 23 has already received bipartisan support.

“To the extent that I think the general public has been asked about it, a pretty strong majority says that no this is not something where big government coercion, should rule the day, it should be based on communication, and you know, that personal choice,” Jacque explained.

We’re told that the bill is expected to pass the State Senate this week, although Governor Evers is expected to veto it if it reached his desk.

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