On Thursday, the U.S. Supreme Court blocked the Biden administration’s mandate that most private employers with 100 or more employees require their workers to be vaccinated or regularly tested for COVID-19 but also let a separate federal mandate that healthcare workers be vaccinated go into effect.
Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said in a press release issued Thursday, “Today’s rulings are a mixed bag for Kansas. Blocking the illegal OSHA mandate gives welcome relief to thousands of employers and employees throughout our state who now will not lose their jobs because of their healthcare decisions, but the disappointing decision to uphold for now the mandate that healthcare workers be vaccinated is likely to aggravate the shortage of nurses and other healthcare professionals that already is causing serious disruption to the delivery of care throughout our state.”
A 6-3 majority of the U.S. Supreme Court found the OSHA mandate likely to be unlawful and ordered it not be enforced while lawsuits challenging it proceed.
A 5-4 majority allowed the healthcare mandate, which was previously blocked by a lower-court injunction, to go into effect.
Schmidt said it is unclear what effect Thursday’s ruling will have on separate legal challenges to two other Biden administration mandates. The federal contractor mandate, which applies to entities that receive federal contracts such as research universities and defense contractors, is currently blocked by federal court injunction. So is the separate mandate that applies to Head Start childcare programs.
Schmidt said he will continue to challenge each of these mandates.