The Supreme Courtroom declined a request to dam Maine’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare works on Friday.
Conservative Justices Neil Gorsuch, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito dissented within the 6-3 choice to reject a bid to cease the requirement whereas litigation continues to play out within the appeals course of.
The vaccine mandate, introduced by Gov. Janet Mills in August, requires all hospital and nursing dwelling employees to get vaccinated towards COVID-19 or danger shedding their jobs.
Maine’s mandate doesn’t supply any spiritual exemption or choice to undergo testing for healthcare employees and was the impetus for a number of healthcare employees to sue.
A 3-judge panel on the U.S. 1st Circuit Courtroom of Appeals in Boston declined to cease the vaccine directive from taking impact earlier this month. The state mentioned it is going to start enforcement of the mandate on Friday.
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“The place many different States have adopted spiritual exemptions, Maine has charted a distinct course,” Gorsuch wrote within the dissent . “There, healthcare employees who’ve served on the entrance line of a pandemic for the final 18 months are actually being fired and their practices shuttered.”
“All for adhering to their constitutionally protected spiritual beliefs. Their plight is worthy of our consideration. I’d grant reduction,” Gorsuch added.
The plaintiffs are represented by the Liberty Counsel, which filed the lawsuit in federal court docket in Maine in August, claiming to symbolize over 2,000 healthcare employees who’re towards being pressured to vaccinate towards COVID-19.
“This case is way from over. We’ll file a petition with the Supreme Courtroom to evaluation the deserves of the case after full briefing and argument,” Liberty Counsel founder and chairman Mat Staver mentioned Friday .
“The Excessive Courtroom’s choice to not grant the emergency reduction is just not a ruling on the deserves. Maine has no authority to order employers to disobey federal Title VII employment regulation. Whereas we should always finally prevail on the deserves, the tragedy is that immediately many well being care heroes are being terminated. Since 2019, Maine has suffered from a scarcity of well being care employees and that scarcity will enhance as of immediately. The individuals who will undergo usually are not solely the well being care employees however sufferers who want care,” he added.