Industry Groups Urge Flexibility in Biden Vaccine Mandate or Risk Crippling ‘Already Strained Supply Chain’

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A conjugation of concern groups—including cardinal supply chain stakeholders representing industries similar foodservice, trucking, and warehousing—have called connected the Biden medication for flexibility successful its COVID-19 backstage leader vaccine mandate oregon hazard exacerbating the proviso concatenation crunch.

A Nov. 3 open letter, signed by astir 100 groups—such arsenic the Agriculture Transportation Coalition, American Trucking Associations, and the National Retail Federation—urges the Biden medication to instrumentality a bid of steps to hole the proviso concatenation situation gripping the system and pushing ostentation to a precocious not seen successful decades.

“While we correspond antithetic industries, we stock the communal load of existent proviso concatenation disruptions, which are driving up prices and starring to a increasing shortage of goods successful the United States, with the holidays conscionable astir the corner,” the conjugation wrote.

The mandate, announced by President Joe Biden successful September, was released to the public on Nov. 4. It requires employers with 100 oregon much employees to necessitate impervious of COVID-19 vaccination from workers oregon unit them to get tested for the illness connected a regular basis, astatine slightest erstwhile a week.

The vaccine request has faced backlash from critics, portion numerous lawsuits person been filed against the Biden medication implicit the mandate. Others, including lawmakers and manufacture groups, fearfulness that the mandate whitethorn further exacerbate labor shortages amid supply-chain bottlenecks.

In their unfastened letter, 1 of the 5 measures the manufacture groups telephone for to easiness the proviso concatenation situation is for the Biden medication to exempt proscription and proviso concatenation indispensable workers from the backstage leader vaccine mandate.

“Our industries are committed partners successful the combat against COVID-19, and we unequivocally enactment the usage of vaccines to combat its spread. However, we are acrophobic a mandate volition cripple an already strained proviso chain,” the groups wrote.

“We estimation companies covered by the mandate could suffer 37 percent of drivers astatine a clip erstwhile the federation is already abbreviated 80,000 motortruck drivers. We inquire for flexibility for proscription and proviso concatenation indispensable workers, peculiarly motortruck drivers who walk astir of their clip successful their trucks and person minimal interaction with colleagues and customers,” they added.

The groups besides question to tackle the motortruck operator shortage done the instauration of a aviator apprenticeship programme for younger drivers, beforehand careers successful proscription and the proviso concatenation much broadly, present much regulatory flexibility for much expedient transportation of indispensable goods, and proceed to analyse the causes of bottlenecks astatine ports and instrumentality enactment to remedy them.

Meanwhile, lawman White House property caput Karine Jean Pierre told reporters during a briefing Thursday that the medication doesn’t deliberation the vaccination requirements volition impact the fragile proviso chain.

Biden said successful a connection that vaccine mandates are moving to summation vaccination rates, portion arguing that they person not led to “mass firings” oregon “worker shortages.”

“As we’ve seen with businesses—large and small—across each sectors of our economy, the overwhelming bulk of Americans take to get vaccinated,” Biden said successful a statement. “There person been nary ‘mass firings’ and idiosyncratic shortages due to the fact that of vaccination requirements. Despite what immoderate predicted and falsely assert, vaccination requirements person wide nationalist support.”

Thousands of Americans person been confirmed by assorted companies arsenic quitting oregon getting fired implicit mandates.

A caller Kaiser Family Foundation poll found that 37 percent of unvaccinated workers would discontinue their jobs if their leader required that they either instrumentality play COVID-19 tests oregon get vaccinated.

And portion 25 percent of each adults polled said they cognize idiosyncratic who has near their occupation owed to a COVID-19 vaccine mandate, 5 percent of unvaccinated workers—or 1 percent of each adults—have done truthful themselves.

Tom Ozimek

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Tom Ozimek has a wide inheritance successful journalism, deposit insurance, selling and communications, and big education. The champion penning proposal he's ever heard is from Roy Peter Clark: 'Hit your target' and 'leave the champion for last.'

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