GE Mandates COVID-19 Vaccines for US Workers

By Reuters
Reuters
Reuters
October 19, 2021 Updated: October 19, 2021

CHICAGO—General Electric Co. has asked its U.S.-based workers to get COVID-19 shots or seek a medical or religious accommodation by Dec. 8 in order to comply with President Joe Biden’s executive order.

Biden last month signed the order requiring federal contractors to mandate COVID-19 shots for employees and get them vaccinated by Dec. 8.

As a federal contractor, GE said it is complying with the executive order. The company updated its vaccine policy for more than 50,000 U.S. workers last week.

The Boston-based conglomerate is the latest U.S. employer to impose such a requirement, which has sparked a political fight.

While supporters of vaccine mandates see them as necessary to pull the country out of the nearly two-year-old pandemic, critics are calling them unconstitutional and authoritarian.

The White House has said vaccine requirements have driven up COVID-19 vaccination rates by 20 percentage points.

The measure has drawn a sharp reaction from some Republicans, with Texas Governor Greg Abbott last week barring COVID-19 vaccine mandates by any entity, including private employers.

Union Pacific Corp. and its three unions have sued each other over the vaccine mandate.

Reuters