Nov. 8 (Reuters) – The Biden administration told a court on Monday that it has clear authority to impose a COVID-19 vaccine rule on employers with at least 100 employees and that a court order on Saturday to block the rule could hold dozens or even could cost hundreds. lives daily.
People are increasingly returning to work and risk accelerating the spread of COVID-19 without the rule, according to the US 5th Circuit Court of Appeals filing by state attorneys.
“With the reopening of workplaces and the emergence of the highly transferable Delta variant, the threat to workers is persistent and overwhelming,” the filing said.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced the rule last week, which also provides a testing and mask alternative to vaccination and a January 4 deadline. The agency said it was necessary to avoid 250,000 hospitalizations. read more
Republican governors, trade groups, private employers and religious organizations sued several federal appeals courts, arguing that the government exceeded its authority. read more
On Saturday, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans suspended the rule, citing “serious legal and constitutional” problems. read more
The government’s filing was in response to a request from the plaintiffs for an injunction to permanently block the rule. Government lawyers said the request was premature.
The government lawyers noted that several cases filed in one place should be consolidated and it remains unclear which court will hear the cases. read more
A White House press secretary on Monday urged employers to continue with vaccinations despite legal challenges. read more
Reporting by Tom Hals in Wilmington, Del. Additional reporting by Mike Scarcella in Washington Editing by Grant McCool and Matthew Lewis
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