Matthew Miller-Novak, a local employment attorney, said Thursday there are only two exceptions to workplace COVID-19 vaccine mandates like the kind recently established by all Cincinnati-area hospital systems.
One: Medical reasons.
“The most prominent of them is ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) disability,” Miller-Novak said. “You have some disability that requires an exception. Some common examples of that in the past are egg allergies, because certain vaccines are bound with certain things and egg properties that cause people to have pretty serious allergic reactions.”
“It has to be a pretty bonafide religious belief,” Miller-Novak said. “So it couldn’t be, ‘Hey, I really believe in God, so I fear no diseases, so I shouldn’t have to take this.’
“It’s something that’s much more extreme — for instance, if you’re Amish or something like that where the core principles of your religion is, ‘We don’t take vaccines or take modern medicine at all.’”
Anyone who refuses a work-required vaccination, whether for COVID-19 or anything else, must qualify for one of these exemptions if they want to keep their job.
Companies can legally terminate employees who don’t have an EEOC-approved excuse for not getting their shots.