Underwood Shareholder Autum Flores was recently interviewed by KVII Channel 7 News regarding whether employers can lawfully mandate that their employees receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Ms. Flores advised that, based on prior guidance from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission concerning the flu vaccine, employers can likely require COVID-19 vaccines for their employees if the vaccines are job-related and consistent with business necessity, or if there is a direct threat of COVID-19 spread among employees or to the general public. Exceptions must be granted to reasonably accommodate an employee’s disability or sincerely-held religious belief. However, Ms. Flores advised that employers may want to consider encouraging and incentivizing employees to receive the vaccine, rather than mandating the vaccine, to avoid employee disgruntlement and possible legal claims.
The interview can be found here.