Thanksgiving week, IN legislators held a special hearing to discuss draft language for an exemption bill for employees.
It’s a watered down version of what we need. Legislators will be working on writing the language in December. This is moving fast, so we have to get involved if we want better language added. It’s expected to have a vote very quickly when legislative session goes back Jan 4.
They are changing the definition of who is involved in the vaccine passport ban. Based on that, they excluded public employees such as state police, school staff, firefighters, university staff, etc from the exemptions.
We have to get them added to the bill. The worthless vaccine passport ban hasn’t stopped public entities from mandating. They’re getting around the passport ban by making a mandate with a “voluntary” proof but considering staff who don’t show proof to be out of compliance with the mandate. Additionally, public employers are allowed to simply ask your status if they mandate, and that doesn’t break the law.
WE HAVE TO ADD GOVERNMENT ENTITY EMPLOYEES TO THE EXEMPTION CODE. Tell them to remove the line that excludes government entities from the definition of employer. It conflicts with current state law within the device implantation law that does define government entities as employees.
This bill guarantees your exemption. They can’t ask about it!!! No more sleepless nights waiting for “approval”. We need them to keep that part is as non negotiable.
We need all hands on desk. Here is an example script that you may cut and paste to an email and use when calling their offices.
Please call and leave a message, then email these specific legislators. Then call and email your own two legislators.
What to say/email:
1. I support employee exemptions. As you make the final language on the draft, I am asking you to delete the line that excludes government entities as employers which excludes their staff from exemptions. Employees of government entities deserve the same exemption rights as others since many government entities, especially public schools, will have an employee mandate. The vaccine passport ban is not enough protection. If government entities mandate the vaccine, they can work around the passport ban by simply verbally asking vaccine status. They aren’t required to offer exemptions in your draft language. Other Indiana laws do include government entities in the definition of an employer, such as in the microchip ban law. Please delete what is currently line 1 on page 4, section 3.
2. Prospective employees need to be added to the bill for exemption protections. Otherwise, it will be impossible for those with medical contraindications and religious beliefs to get hired by an employer who mandates vaccines.
3. Student interns doing their clinical work, apprentices, and others within the realm of needing to complete an on the job experience to graduate from their educational program need to be included in having exemptions.
4. I am asking that you keep the language currently on page 5, section 7 that says the employer must allow the employee to opt out with the exemption without further inquiry. That part must remain in the bill, or it will return to exemptions being denied like they are currently being denied now.
5. Regarding testing. The wording needs changed. They should say “if” an employer mandates a vaccine, testing for covid shall not be more than weekly and the employee is not responsible for the expense. Current language appears to require an employer to test those with an exemption. Not all employers who mandate want to be required to do testing for staff. They should not be required to test. If an employer wants to require testing, then they should have to be financially responsible for the expense.
6. Regarding an employer taking a negative action against an employee with an exemption, that should include charging more for benefits, separating staff by vaccination status, making staff with exemptions wear identification that those without exemptions are not required to wear, etc. All employees need to be treated equally.
Majority leader Rep Lehman Phone: 317-234-9380 Email: email@example.com
Rep Todd Huston
Also call your own legislators
Call and email this week, and every week in December. Demand they make the bill include ALL employees (don’t let them tell you the passport ban protects the others….look at IU mandates, it didn’t stop them). It should also include interns, students on clinicals, and volunteers.
If you want to read their current draft language, you can download a copy at the website They Work 4 Us
I would love to get an exemption for testing, but I don’t see winning that fight. You are free to ask for that when you make your contact.
I would love to have vaccination status added as a protected class for discrimination. Other groups are working on that. If you want to ask for that, please do. But I think it’s important that we use their current draft language to make our requests as I believe they are going to use that framework. We need to get as much protection as we can written in their bill. They’re unlikely to scrap the draft bill they’re working on and already issued to the public, so it’s my opinion that we need to use its framework for our requests. I’d love to see the flu vaccine added to this since it only includes the covid vaccine. If people want to ask for that go ahead.
If you have more requests, please make them as you contact the legislators.
EVERYONE NEEDS TO TAKE ACTION AND MAKE THEIR VOICES HEARD