Disney pauses COVID-19 vaccine mandate in Florida
- Governor Ron DeSantis signed new law limiting employers' power to mandate vaccinations
- Disney's decision was a result of the state legislature's new laws
- Disney employees who are not fully vaccinated would be compelled to wear facial coverings
Disney has paused its policy mandating Florida-based employees to take the COVID-19 vaccine after Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law new bills last week that limit employers' power to require vaccinations, according to a memo sent to employees on Friday.
The corporation notified employees in a note that the mandate has been stopped as a result of the state legislature's decision during a special session last week, as well as an appeal court's temporary postponement of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's federal vaccination recommendations, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
"We believe that our approach to mandatory vaccines has been the right one as we’ve continued to focus on the safety and well-being of our Cast Members and Guests, and at this point, more than 90 percent of active Florida-based Cast Members have already verified that they are fully vaccinated. We will address legal developments as appropriate," Disney said in a statement Monday afternoon, the Associated Press reported.
Any Disney employees who are not fully vaccinated would be compelled to wear facial coverings and follow social distance and other safety precautions. According to the memo, the business has also put a halt to vaccination exemption petitions. Employees who have not completed the vaccination verification procedure will also be treated as unvaccinated for the time being.
Non-union employees have been given till September 28 to finish the immunisation course. Employees, who were represented by a union, negotiated an agreement with the corporation and were given until October 22 to submit proof of immunisation.
Companies must enable workers who agree to frequent testing and wearing protective gear to be excluded from compulsory immunizations, according to laws signed by DeSantis last Thursday. Exemptions for religious or medical reasons are also allowed under the new legislation, which Disney had previously incorporated in its mandate.
With inputs from the Associated Press