Changes in the House--Anti-Vaccine Mandate Bill

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Changes in the House--Anti-Vaccine Mandate Bill

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South Carolina House changes its rules and advanced a bill against the federal vaccine mandate. On December 9th, 2021, the House Ways and Means Committee amended House Bill H. 3126 that blocks employers in state and local governments and school districts from firing or suspending unvaccinated employees. House Bill H.3126 will make workers who were fired or suspended due to their unvaccinated status eligible for unemployment benefits. This bill would also allocated $10 million dollars to the department of Health and the Medical University of South Carolina to fund COVD-19 testing for private employers. The House Republicans argue that an employer's right to fire an unvaccinated employee is "discriminatory" in nature. They also attest that private businesses and public offices cannot mandate an "unlawful" mandate that violates the individual freedoms of employees. Thus, the House Bill H.3126 signifies a growing concern of individual autonomy in the State. As the pandemic continues to variate and spread, some civilians feel that COVID-19 protection should stop at the doorstep of private business owners. As Republican Russell Ott argued, South Carolina now faces the possibility of growing liability lawsuits if this law is passed. While this bill may protect employees, it would not protect employers and private business owners from being sued in the event that one of their employees contracted COVID-19 and passed it to a consumer.

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This item was submitted on July 12, 2022 by Ashley Hampton (She/Her) using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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