(ReliableNews.org) – State and federal governments are forcing health care workers across the US to vaccinate against COVID-19 or risk losing their jobs. A group of workers sued over Maine’s mandate, and it went all the way to the Supreme Court. The justices recently handed down their decision.
On Friday, October 29, the SCOTUS ruled 6-3 to reject an emergency appeal from Maine health care workers who wanted the court to stop the vaccine mandate. The state requires all medical workers to receive the vaccination, and it’s not offering a religious exemption.
BREAKING: By a 6-3 vote, the Supreme Court rejects a challenge to Maine's COVID-19 vaccine mandate for health care workers. The challengers complained that the mandate lacks religious exemptions. Thomas, Alito, & Gorsuch dissent.https://t.co/h0xz8BVhl4
— SCOTUSblog (@SCOTUSblog) October 29, 2021
Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote the dissenting opinion for the court, and Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas joined him in his argument against the majority ruling. The associate justice said the case presented a serious error, consequential question and irreparable harm. He pointed out while other states have put religious exemptions in place to protect the First Amendment rights of workers, Maine refused. As a result, frontline healthcare workers are “now being fired and their practices shuttered” for exercising their constitutional rights.
The court majority didn’t give a reason for its decision to deny the request to block the mandate. However, Justices Amy Coney Barrett and Brett Kavanaugh said it’s within the court’s discretion to refuse to “grant extraordinary relief.”
The latest decision was the second time the high court has refused to block a vaccine mandate.
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