CHICAGO – SEIU Healthcare Illinois President Greg Kelley issued the following statement after a federal judge ruled Biden’s vaccine mandate for workers in Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services facilities was illegal:
“This injunction is rooted in misinformation rather than in responsible public health policy. Vaccine mandates are an opportunity for employers and workers to come together to provide education, listen to workers’ concerns, and address safety issues in healthcare facilities.
“We have daily proof of the importance of vaccine mandates and other safety protocols, such as the recent COVID-19 outbreak at Jesse Brown VA Medical Center.
“While some healthcare facilities support this injunction, claiming that vaccination mandates impact staffing levels at facilities, the reality is that staffing shortages are caused by the refusal to pay frontline workers living wages. The answer isn’t to sacrifice worker and resident safety. The answer is for management of hospitals and nursing homes to pay the fair living wages workers need and deserve, while ensuring proper staffing ratios for patient and resident safety.”