Can My Employer Fire Me If I’m Not Vaccinated?
There’s been a lot of discussion lately about vaccines and their role in the workplace. Some states are pushing for mandatory vaccination policies, while others are trying to protect the rights of employees who choose not to get vaccinated.
What do anti-discrimination laws say about employer-mandated vaccines? And what can you do if you feel like you’re experiencing workplace discrimination because of your vaccine status?
In this article, we’ll explore the current state of vaccine law and give you some tips on how to protect your rights as an employee.
What Does the Law Say About Employer-Mandated Vaccines?
The current state of the law is that there is no federal law that requires employers to mandate vaccines for their employees. However, there are a few exceptions to this rule.
Some states have laws that require certain types of employees to get vaccinated. For example, healthcare workers in California must get vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus.
The law is constantly changing, so it’s important to check with your local employment discrimination lawyer to learn any specific requirements in your state.
Can Your Employer Fire You If You’re Not Vaccinated?
In general, employers cannot fire employees for refusing to get vaccinated. However, there are some exceptions to this rule.
For example, if you work in a field where the law requires you to get vaccinated, your employer can legally fire you if you do not comply and might get away with workplace retaliation.
Additionally, if you are in a position where you could transmit an illness to other employees or customers, your employer may fire you for refusing a vaccine.
What Can You Do If You Get Discriminated Against?
Retaliation in the workplace is a common practice. If you feel like you’re going through it because of your vaccination status, there are a few things you can do. They include:
1. Talk to Your Employer About Their Policy and See if There’s Any Flexibility
Some employers are willing to be flexible regarding their vaccine policies. If you have a medical condition that prevents you from vaccination, or if you have religious beliefs that conflict with getting a vaccination, your employer may be willing to make an exception. It never hurts to ask!
2. Get a Medical Exemption From the Vaccine Requirements
When it comes to mandatory vaccines, there are two types of exemptions: medical and religious.
If you have a medical condition that prevents you from vaccination, you may get a medical exemption from the vaccine requirements. To do so, you’ll need to get a letter from your doctor outlining your condition and explaining why vaccination is not recommended.
3. File a Complaint With the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
If you feel like you’ve been discriminated against because of your vaccine status, you can file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC is a government agency that protects employees from discrimination in the workplace. They will investigate your complaint and help you get the justice you deserve.
4. Talk to a Workplace Retaliation Attorney
If you want more help or guidance on what to do if you’re getting discriminated against because of your vaccine status, talk to an employment lawyer. They can help you understand your rights and guide you through the state and federal law and the legal process involved.
As an employee, it’s important to know your rights when it comes to vaccines. With the current state of vaccine law, you have some protections against discrimination.
If you feel like you’re being discriminated against, talk to your employer, get a medical exemption, or file a formal complaint with the EEOC. You can also talk to a lawyer for more help and guidance on how to prove discrimination retaliation claims.
Get Legal Help from Levine and Blit Today!
If you have more questions about employment law or want to know your rights, a retaliation attorney at Levine and Blit can help. Our team of experienced employment discrimination lawyers can answer your questions and help you understand your options. Contact us today at (212) 967-3000 for a free consultation. We’re here to help!