Poll: 52 Percent of U.S. Companies Plan to Have Vaccine Mandate by Fourth Quarter

Chris Gaetano
Published Date:
Sep 1, 2021

Vaccine mandates are expected to grow at a record pace, as a recent poll has found that more than half of U.S. companies plan to have one by the fourth quarter of this year, Yahoo Finance reported.

The survey, conducted by Willis Towers Watson, had a sample size of 961 U.S. organizations that collectively employ 9.7 million workers, and it took place between Aug. 18 and 25. It revealed that 52 percent of these employers plan to have some sort of vaccine requirement soon, ranging from requiring vaccination for a subset of employees to requiring vaccination for employees who want to access common areas, such as cafeterias, to requiring vaccination for all employees. In contrast, currently only 21 percent have such mandates today. 

Business leaders have generally been open to the idea of vaccine mandates, but as time went on, they began shifting more toward rewards over requirements to get their staff immunized, even though, by law, companies can require them. 

Vaccine mandates have been on the rise over the past few months for a growing number of workplaces. The mandates can be found mostly in workplaces that have been heavily affected by the pandemic in one way or the other, such as hospitals, child care centers, meatpacking plants and restaurants; the common thread seems to be those who will be working around a lot of other people on a regular basis. Yahoo Finance speculated that the sharp increase in planned requirements are linked with the recent approval of the Pfizer vaccine by the Food and Drug Administration, which pushed many employers who'd been previously on the fence toward a mandate. 

Even some employers that require no mandate are still very interested in their workers' vaccination status, the survey found. About 59 percent currently track their workers’ vaccination status, and another 19 percent are planning or considering doing so later this year. Of those that track employee vaccination status, a majority (62 percent)  require proof of vaccination, such as completed Centers for Disease Control and Prevention vaccination cards, while 36 percent rely on employees to self-report.

At any rate, the survey also found that only a small minority of employers do not require masks: 80 percent require employees to wear masks indoors at any location. Another 13 percent are planning or considering doing so.

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