Percentage of workers facing vaccine mandates stalls at 36 percent: Gallup

Thirty-six percent of U.S. workers are subject to a COVID-19 vaccine mandate, according to a Gallup poll released Wednesday, the same figure the pollster recorded in October.

The survey indicates that workplace vaccine requirements have leveled off after consistently growing in popularity earlier this year. Between May and September, the percentage of workers facing a vaccine mandate increased from 5 percent to 29 percent, according to Gallup.

The poll found that 43 percent of workers say their employers encourage them to get vaccinated but do not require it, while 21 percent of employers do not have a vaccine policy. 

President Biden has noted stalling workplace vaccination requirements in his push to implement the federal vaccine-or-test mandate for employers with 100 or more workers. Employers were expected to begin complying with parts of the rule this month, but the order is currently blocked in federal court amid a wave of lawsuits from conservative groups and business interests.

Dozens of large corporations instituted vaccine requirements for their office workers to combat a surge in COVID-19 cases this summer. But many companies, including Walmart and McDonald’s, have exempted their front-line workers from the mandate over concerns about losing employees amid a tight labor market. 

Gallup estimates that 1 in 5 U.S. workers are not vaccinated. Just 5 percent of those unvaccinated workers say they plan to get the shot. 

Nearly half of unvaccinated workers say that their employer does not have a vaccine policy in place, while 20 percent appear to be resisting or working around a vaccine mandate. Roughly 85 percent of vaccinated workers say their employer either requires or recommends the vaccine.

“The relatively small proportion of unvaccinated workers employed at jobs with vaccination requirements, compared with those employed at places without them, suggests that such mandates can be an effective way to get more Americans vaccinated,” Gallup wrote in its analysis. 

The poll found that 55 percent of workers support workplace vaccine requirements, down 1 point from October. The percentage of those opposing the requirement fell from 37 percent to 35 percent.

The Gallup survey of U.S. workers was conducted from Nov. 29 to Dec. 5 among 2,312 adults employed full or part-time. The margin of error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Tags COVID-19 employer Gallup Joe Biden mandate poll requirement Vaccine
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