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Biden to mandate COVID-19 vaccines for federal workers, set new school guidelines | LIVE

CA, 10 Sep 2021
U.S. President Joe Biden announced Thursday sweeping new federal COVID-19 vaccine requirements, which could affect as many as 100 million Americans.

The new rules will mandate that all employers with more than 100 employees require them to be vaccinated or test for the virus weekly, affecting about 80 million residents. These businesses will also be required to give paid time off to get vaccinated. The roughly 17 million workers at health facilities receiving federal Medicare or Medicaid will also have to be vaccinated.

With COVID-19 continuing to surge among the unvaccinated, the president commended those who had received their shots, but expressed concerns that nearly 80 million Americans had "failed to get the shot" and criticized elected officials for what he said were undermining the fight against COVID-19, though he did not name them.

He also spoke about a deal with retailers like Amazon, Kroger and Walmart to help make rapid testing more available in schools.

Biden also blasted some elected officials, such as governors, for threatening school workers' pay if they try to implement COVID-19 precautions in their schools. "Talk about bullying in schools," Biden retorted. He also added that the federal government would restore 100 per cent of the workers' pay if they are punished for "doing the right thing."

Biden's comments appeared to be a subtle aim at Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis' administration's move implementing a blanket ban on masks in schools and hitting pro-mask local school boards with financial penalties and a recent court decision ruling the state could not do so.

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