Federal Judge Rules in Favor of Houston Hospital Group’s Mandatory Vaccination Policy
A federal judge in Houston, Texas, has ruled in favor of a hospital group that requires employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccination. A total of 116 employees filed a lawsuit during the previous month, attempting to fight the policy, claiming it would be illegal to terminate them for refusal. The hospital claims that this is untrue, and workers are only shielded from termination for refusing to commit a criminal act that holds a penalty.
The U.S. District Judge presiding over the case, Lynn Hughes, agreed with the hospital group and dismissed the lawsuit ruling that the public’s interest in a hospital capable of treating the pandemic outweighs the staff’s choice on whether or not to receive a vaccination. Additionally, the judge stated that the staff has the right to refuse the vaccine and find other employment.
Following the June 7th deadline for employees to receive the vaccine, the hospital group suspended a total of 178 employees. The plaintiffs requested a temporary restraining order against the June 7th deadline but were denied. If the employees continue to refuse the vaccine by June 21’st, the hospital will terminate their employment.
This case continues to hold up the employer’s right to mandate the vaccine. The only exceptions to this are religious and medical exemptions.