Texas Governor Greg Abbott has signed an order prohibiting all vaccine mandates statewide, together with at personal corporations, arguing that whereas he’s in favor of the inoculations, they have to by no means be compelled on folks in opposition to their will.
Signed Monday, Abbott’s govt order states that “no entity in Texas can compel receipt of a Covid-19 vaccine by any particular person… who objects to such vaccination” for no matter motive – whether or not that be religious-based objections, medical issues or different causes of “private conscience” – threatening a superb of as much as $1,000 for violators.
“The Covid-19 vaccine is secure, efficient, and our greatest protection in opposition to the virus,” Abbott mentioned in an announcement, however added that it “ought to stay voluntary and by no means compelled.”
I issued an Government Order prohibiting vaccine mandates by ANY entity in Texas.
I additionally added the difficulty to the Particular Session agenda.
The COVID-19 vaccine is secure, efficient, & our greatest protection in opposition to the virus, however ought to all the time stay voluntary & by no means compelled. pic.twitter.com/8hHHLyebCk
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) October 11, 2021
The order invokes the state’s Covid-19 emergency administration plan, which permits for fines of as much as $1,000 for individuals who fail to adjust to its measures. Whereas the plan itself additionally units out a most 180-day jail sentence, Abbott famous that jail time is “not an accessible penalty” for violating Monday’s govt order.
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Nonetheless, in a separate missive to the Texas legislature, Abbott additionally urged lawmakers to craft a invoice just like his personal govt order, “establishing that no entity in Texas can compel receipt of a Covid-19 vaccine,” hoping to codify the measure into legislation somewhat than merely depend on govt authority.
In June, Abbott additionally signed laws that threatened to revoke licenses and working permits from companies that require clients to be vaccinated, successfully barring what the governor known as “vaccine passports” whereas arguing that “Texas is open 100%, and we need to ensure you have the liberty to go the place you need with out limits.”
Abbott’s strikes in opposition to vaccine mandates mirror related efforts taken by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, among the many nation’s most vocal opponents of such necessities. Final month, DeSantis threatened fines of as much as $5,000 for any state company that requires vaccination as a situation for employment, insisting that in Florida, vaccines will stay “accessible for all however necessary for none.” Along with barring vaccine ‘passports’ for each state and personal businesses, the governor has additionally prohibited masks mandates in plenty of settings, together with in public colleges, kicking off a heated authorized battle.
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