University of Oklahoma announces employee vaccine mandate

University of Oklahoma announces employee vaccine mandate
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The University of Oklahoma (OU) is requiring its employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19. 

The school stated on its website that all employees must be fully vaccinated by Dec. 8 with a coronavirus vaccine approved by the World Health Organization.

The university said it was complying with President BidenJoe BidenCarville advises Democrats to 'quit being a whiny party' Wendy Sherman takes leading role as Biden's 'hard-nosed' Russia negotiator Sullivan: 'It's too soon to tell' if Texas synagogue hostage situation part of broader extremist threat MORE’s executive order for federal contractors to be vaccinated against COVID-19. The president signed the order on Sept. 9.

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“After a careful legal assessment, it has been determined the order applies to Oklahoma research universities — including the University of Oklahoma — and their employees,” the school said. “If we do not comply, OU runs the risk of losing hundreds of millions of dollars each year in federal funding for the life-changing research, education and services we provide.” 

OU said that employees will be allowed to apply for medical or religious exemptions. Employees who are not in compliance with the mandate by Dec. 8, either through vaccination or an accommodation, will be subject to disciplinary action.

Public universities in the Sooner state receive roughly $368.2 million in federal funding, according to The Oklahoman.

Separately on Friday, Oklahoma State University (OSU) announced that it would also mandate employees be vaccinated or receive an exemption by Dec. 8 to comply with Biden’s executive order.

OSU’s mandate also applies to all employees and does not include an option for weekly testing.

Neither of the mandates apply to students, however. Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt (R) signed Senate Bill 658 in May, which prevents public schools and universities from requiring students to be vaccinated against the coronavirus.