Over the last two weeks or so, several federal courts have issued nationwide injunctions prohibiting the U.S. government from going forward with mandatory vaccination (or vax and test) rules that have been implemented.
First, it was the Fifth Circuit that stayed the OSHA “Vax or Test” ETS. That case and others around the country have been centralized before the Sixth Circuit.
Then last week, a District Court issued a nationwide stay of the healthcare CMS mandate.
And then on December 7th, a District Court in Georgia issued a nationwide stay of the federal contractor vaccine mandate. As employment law blogger Philip Miles noted as to the reason why: “Well, the gist of it is that Pres. Biden relied on the Procurement Act, and the Court concluded that the Procurement Act did not authorize the president to issue such a mandate.”
For employers, the reasons why are less important than “now what?”
And for that, the answer is straightforward — Be Patient. There is nothing inherently wrong with continuing to implement the vaccine mandate in the workplace, but this stay (at least for the moment) is putting on hold the rule.
It won’t be the last word; an expedited appeal is expected and it’s unlikely that the district court’s decision will be backed up — at least as it stands now.
Thus, the theme of this pandemic continues: “Stay tuned for more.”