The Supreme Court of the United States successful Washington connected Sept. 22, 2017. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)
The U.S. Supreme Court connected Friday turned distant healthcare workers seeking a religious exemption to Maine’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate successful the latest conflict implicit vaccination to scope the justices.
The court, which has a 6-3 conservative-leaning majority, rejected a petition made by 9 unnamed plaintiffs who identified themselves arsenic healthcare workers who entity to receiving the shots connected spiritual grounds. The tribunal antecedently rejected challenges to vaccine mandates successful New York and Indiana, though those cases did not impact spiritual objections.
The justices were divided, with 3 blimpish members saying they would person granted the request.
In Maine, “healthcare workers who person served connected the beforehand enactment of a pandemic for the past 18 months are present being fired and their practices shuttered,” Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote successful a dissenting opinion. He was joined by Justice Clarence Thomas and Justice Samuel Alito.
Maine Governor Janet Mills’ medication had required that each healthcare workers successful the authorities beryllium afloat vaccinated by the opening of October, but the authorities said it would not enforce it until Friday.
The politician said specified workers execute a captious relation successful protecting the wellness of Maine’s residents and that each precaution needed to beryllium taken to support against the dispersed of the coronavirus, particularly successful airy of the beingness of the highly transmissible Delta variant.
Maine removed spiritual exemptions from mandated vaccines successful 2019—before the pandemic—because of falling vaccination rates. Voters successful the authorities overwhelmingly rejected a referendum challenging the instrumentality past year.
The authorities has required hospitals and different healthcare facilities to guarantee that workers are vaccinated against assorted diseases since 1989.
The challengers argued that the deficiency of a spiritual exemption violated their close to escaped workout of religion nether the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment.
A national justice had earlier rejected the bid for an exemption.
The conservative-majority Supreme Court, which has been receptive to claims involving spiritual rights, rejected 2 erstwhile challenges to COVID-19 vaccine mandates.
Justice Sonia Sotomayor successful October refused to artifact New York City’s request that nationalist schoolhouse teachers and employees beryllium vaccinated. Justice Amy Coney Barrett successful August denied a bid by Indiana University students to artifact that school’s vaccination mandate.
By Lawrence Hurley
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