Judge Declines to Block Vaccine Mandate for Los Alamos Lab Workers

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A New Mexico justice connected Friday rejected a petition by dozens of workers astatine the Los Alamos National Laboratory to artifact a COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

The mandate, which took effect connected Friday afternoon, was challenged by a full of 114 workers astatine the laboratory, which was the birthplace of the atomic bomb.

The plaintiffs claimed that Triad National Security LLC, the contractor that runs the lab for the U.S. Department of Energy, is violating their law rights and that immoderate exemptions for the mandate, which was archetypal announced successful August, had been unduly denied.

The employees besides alleged that immoderate had been harassed by laboratory absorption for not being vaccinated against COVID-19, creating a hostile enactment environment. One worker was allegedly screamed astatine and told helium and his household deserved to dice for being unvaccinated.

Attorneys for the Los Alamos National Laboratory argued successful tribunal connected Thursday that being vaccinated against COVID-19, the illness caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, was a information of moving astatine the facility.

State District Judge Jason Lidyard agreed, saying unvaccinated employees volition person to find enactment elsewhere. The plaintiffs see scientists, atomic engineers, task managers, probe technicians, and others, and immoderate person worked for the laboratory for decades.

Under the caller rules, individuals who are granted spiritual exemptions volition beryllium placed connected permission without wage oregon beryllium forced to usage abrogation time. Those who person yet to person their 2nd dose volition beryllium placed connected unpaid permission oregon person to usage up abrogation clip until afloat vaccinated.

It’s not wide however galore laboratory employees person requested exemptions oregon however galore could beryllium terminated for refusing to comply. The laboratory said past week that much than 96 percent of workers had astatine slightest 1 dose of the vaccine.

“The information and wellness of our employees remains our apical precedence arsenic we fulfill our nationalist information mission, and arsenic a effect our vaccine mandate remains successful effect,” laboratory spokeswoman Jennifer Talhelm said successful a connection connected Friday.

The plaintiffs are considering an appeal, according to Jonathan Diener, an lawyer representing the workers. He said the plaintiffs person requested a assemblage trial.

“The main happening is we wanted to halt radical from being thrown retired of work,” the lawyer said.

Los Alamos National Laboratory didn’t instantly respond to a petition for remark by The Epoch Times.

The laboratory presently employs astir 14,000 people, making it 1 of New Mexico’s largest employers.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Isabel van Brugen

Isabel van Brugen

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Isabel van Brugen is an award-winning writer and presently a quality newsman astatine The Epoch Times. She holds a master's successful paper journalism from City, University of London.