OSHA backtracks, won’t hold employers requiring COVID shot liable for workers’ vaccine injuries
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WASHINGTON, D.C., May 24, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has suddenly backpedaled its policy that employers could potentially be held liable for employees’ adverse reactions to coronavirus vaccines, should they attempt to require workers to receive such injections.
The original policy put employers on notice that should they attempt to require employees to receive experimental coronavirus vaccines, any resulting adverse reaction could be considered “work-related” for which the employer may be held liable.
OSHA released this guidance only on April 20 with its reversal coming just in the last several days.
OSHA’s previous “Frequently Asked Questions” section about the coronavirus included a question about whether an employer that mandates employees receive a coronavirus vaccine is required to record any adverse events as a result of these injections. Such recording requirements of serious work-related injuries and illness may not only leave an employer vulnerable to worker’s compensation claims but such incidents could also impact the employer’s safety record.
The question and answer read in full:
If I require my employees to take the COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of their employment, are adverse reactions to the vaccine recordable?
If you require your employees to be vaccinated as a condition of employment (i.e., for work-related reasons), then any adverse reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine is work-related. The adverse reaction is recordable if it is a new case under 29 CFR 1904.6 and meets one or more of the general recording criteria in 29 CFR 1904.7.
Following pushback from some trade associations, who had pledged to leverage the intervention of members of the U.S. Congress, OSHA changed its policy stating they would not enforce these recording requirements for at least for another year.
The new question and answer read in full:
Are adverse reactions to the COVID-19 vaccine recordable on the OSHA recordkeeping log?
DOL and OSHA, as well as other federal agencies, are working diligently to encourage COVID-19 vaccinations. OSHA does not wish to have any appearance of discouraging workers from receiving COVID-19 vaccination, and also does not wish to disincentivize employers’ vaccination efforts. As a result, OSHA will not enforce 29 CFR 1904’s recording requirements to require any employers to record worker side effects from COVID-19 vaccination through May 2022. We will reevaluate the agency’s position at that time to determine the best course of action moving forward.
When the original policy was announced, Brian Turmail, AGC vice president of public affairs, commented, “It's almost like they haven't talked to the rest of the Biden administration about the goal of getting as many people vaccinated as possible.”
Author Alex Berenson, a former New York Times journalist, tweeted about the change, commenting, “The vaccine fanatics have come for [OSHA] … It’s hard to overstate how shocking this change is … if your boss tells you to take a vaccine or get fired, and you wind up in the hospital afterwards, no one has to know.”
“And please note this language appears to apply not just to quasi-mandatory (take it or get moved to a different job) but actually mandatory (take it or get fired) vaccinations,” he concluded.
Despite universally accepted medical norms established by the Nuremberg Code of 1947, prohibiting any coercion to receive experimental medical treatment, there have been a number of employers who have been seeking to mandate these experimental injections, despite even possible illegality. The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported this beginning trend in a variety of fields including machine operators, office workers, restaurant waiters, and medical staff.
“The Houston Methodist Hospital network is mandating vaccines for both existing employees and new hires, barring an exemption,” Chip Cutter of the WSJ wrote. “Those who fail to comply will at first be suspended without pay, and later terminated.”
Under the previous OSHA policy, employers would have been more vulnerable to be held liable had an employee been afflicted with an adverse reaction, or even death, due to such a vaccine mandate.
For example, 39-year-old nurse aide Janet More died this last New Year’s Eve within 48 hours of receiving one of these injections. According to her brother, she at least had the impression “it was a mandatory vaccine that she had to take for her job.”
A similar case involves the death of 28-year-old Sara Stickles, a nutritional specialist at Swedish American hospital in Rockford, IL who died just five days following her second shot of one of the mRNA gene-therapy vaccines. She too had the clear impression that these injections were required by her employer.
While the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 shields vaccine manufacturers from any liability due to injuries or death caused by their products, such scenarios as these could still leave employers who mandate coronavirus vaccines liable for significant damages.
And adverse events with regard to these shots are not uncommon. Data released from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last Friday reveals that between December 14, 2020 and May 14, a total of 227,805 total adverse events were passively reported to the U.S. government’s primary reporting system (VAERS), including 4,201 deaths and 18,528 serious injuries.
While causation is not explicitly confirmed through the VARES reporting system, neither can it be presumed that all such adverse events are reported. Indeed, one study in 2010 found that “fewer than 1% of vaccine injuries” are reported to VAERS, suggesting the actual numbers of deaths and injuries due to these experimental substances are significantly higher.
And despite this change in OSHA policy, it remains possible employers requiring these injections may be held legally liable for violating federal law. According to America’s Frontline Doctors (AFLDS) such products as these which are approved for emergency use only, “are prohibited from being mandated by federal law.” The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s emergency use authorization (EUA) specifically states that individuals must have the free "option to accept or refuse” these vaccines. The prospect of being terminated from one’s job by refusing, certainly undermines such necessary freedom.
Attorneys Mary Holland, president of Children’s Health Defense, and Greg Glaser warned last January that employers and universities who seek to defy the EUA law and attempt to require such injections of employees and students, “are likely to lose if challenged in court.”
In order to assist individuals who wish to challenge their employers, schools, or universities that are requiring experimental COVID-19 vaccines, AFLDS has provided a template letter that can be sent to these entities and persons putting them on notice of their legal vulnerability.
“The law is clear. An experimental vaccine cannot be mandated,” the introduction reads. And the text, drafted in the second person to the mandating authority states, “any employer, public school, or any other entity or person who mandates experimental vaccines on any human being is not protected from liability for any resulting harm. While vaccine manufacturers may be shielded from liability, your institution is not protected, and neither are you.”