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Religious exemptions becoming common loophole against COVID-19 vaccine mandates – Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu, Hawaii 2021-09-16 11:32:54 –

An estimated 2,600 Los Angeles Police Department employees cite religious opposition trying to get out of the required COVID-19 vaccination. In Washington, thousands of state workers seek similar exemptions.

And in Arkansas, hospitals have so many such demands from their employees that they seem to call them bluffs.

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Religious objections, once used sparingly across the country to exempt various vaccines needed, are becoming a much more widely used loophole for COVID-19 shots.

And it grows only according to President Joe Biden’s radical new vaccine obligations for more than 100 million Americans, including government employees and workers in companies with more than 100 employees. There is likely to be.

The administration acknowledges that a small number of Americans use religious forgiveness and some may attempt to abuse it. But he said he believed that even a slight improvement in vaccination rates would save lives.

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Union officials say there are many demands, but it is not clear how many federal officials have demanded religious forgiveness. The Ministry of Labor states that accommodation can be denied if it causes an undue burden on the employer.

States have different mask and vaccine requirements, but in most cases exemptions are provided for certain medical conditions and religious or philosophical appeals. The use of such exemptions has increased over the last decade, especially by parents on behalf of school children.

This allowance is provided in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which requires employers to provide reasonable accommodation to employees who oppose working requirements because of their “honestly held” religious beliefs. It is stipulated that it will not be.

Religious beliefs need not be recognized by organized religions, and according to the rules set by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, they are new, unusual, or “look illogical or irrational to others.” There is a possibility. But it’s not just based on political or social ideas.

It puts the employer in a position to decide what is a legitimate religious belief and what is avoidance.

Many major religious denominations have not objected to the COVID-19 vaccine. However, due to the long-standing role that cell lines derived from fetal tissue have played directly or indirectly in the research and development of various vaccines and medicines, the development has sparked heated debate.

Roman Catholic leaders in New Orleans and St. Louis even called Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 shot “morally jeopardized.” J & J emphasizes that the vaccine does not contain fetal tissue.

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In addition, the Vatican’s doctrinal office states that it is “morally acceptable” for Catholics to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, which is based on studies using cells derived from aborted foets. Pope Francis himself says that it is “suicide” that is not shot and is fully vaccinated with Pfizer’s prescription.

In New York, state legislators attempted to mandate vaccines for health care workers without a religious exemption. On Tuesday, a federal judge blocked the state from enforcing a rule that would give a group of workers time to claim it was illegal because of no opt-out.

Andrew Kurtiko, a registered nurse, is one of those who wants not to be vaccinated with religious exemptions, preparing to leave New York for Florida with his 18-year-old daughter if necessary. I am.

Kurtyko said the “strict” vaccine requirements in the United States are reminiscent of communist Poland, where he and his family grew up before they emigrated to the United States in 1991. He is a Catholic and believes that fetal stem cells were tested in the production of vaccines. He called Pope Francis’s guidance on vaccination “his own opinion.”

“My parents came to this country for a better life and crossed the sea,” Kurtyko said. “What I can do is fight for myself. My family is going to another state where religious exemptions are still respected. Our rights are trampled.”

Throughout the United States, civil servants, doctors, and community leaders are trying to help people circumvent the requirements for COVID-19 masks and vaccines.

In Tulsa, Oklahoma, Rev. Jackson Ramyer has downloaded the “Religious Exemption” form on the Church’s website and provided it with a link to a donation proposal to the Church. The 29-year-old is running for the US Senate as a Republican.

Anyone interested can get a form signed by a religious leader. Alternatively, if the person attends the church and donates, Ramyer can sign it himself. He said more than 35,000 people downloaded the form in just three days.

“We are not anti-vacers. We just support freedom,” Rameyer said. “Many of these signed people … have already been vaccinated. They don’t think it’s right for someone else to be forced or lose their job.”

However, getting a religious exemption is not as easy as creating a signed form. The outbreak of measles in schools over the last decade has led some states to change their policies. Some now require an actual signed affidavit from a religious leader instead of an online form. California abolished non-medical tax exemption in 2015.

Some employers have a strict policy. United Airlines told employees last week that people with religious tax exemptions would be on unpaid leave until a new coronavirus testing procedure was implemented.

In Los Angeles, police chief Michel Moore said he was waiting for guidance from city officials on how to handle the exemption request. The city requires city officials to be vaccinated by October 5, unless medical or religious exemptions are granted. A group of LAPD employees is advocating this policy.

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has warned people seeking tax exemptions. “We do not tolerate the abuse of these tax exemptions by people who simply do not want to be vaccinated. We strongly recommend that anyone considering a dishonest exemption application reconsider.”

In Washington, Jay Inslee says about 60,000 state officials will be fully vaccinated or lost their jobs by October 18 unless they receive accommodation that allows them to stay with medical or religious exemptions. Subject to the governor’s orders. employee.

As of Tuesday, more than 3,800 workers have demanded religious exemptions. So far, 737s have been approved, but authorities have emphasized that the exemption does not guarantee continued employment.

Once the tax exemption is approved, agencies need to assess whether employees can work in their accommodation while ensuring a safe workplace. So far, seven accommodations have been granted.

Insley spokeswoman Tara Lee said the process “may help distinguish between personal beliefs that are held in good faith and religious beliefs that are held in good faith.”

In Arkansas, approximately 5% of privately owned Conway Regional Health System staff require religious or medical exemptions.

The hospital responded by submitting to employees a form listing a number of common medicines such as Tylenol, Peptobismus, Preparation H, Tam, which said it was developed or tested using fetal cell lines. ..

The form asks people to sign it and prove that “my sincerely held religious beliefs are consistently true and I do not use or use any of the listed drugs.” increase.

In a statement, Matt Troop, President and Chief Executive Officer of Conway Regional Health, said:

Religious exemptions becoming common loophole against COVID-19 vaccine mandates Source link Religious exemptions becoming common loophole against COVID-19 vaccine mandates

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