Tennessee Governor Signs Law to Ban COVID-19 Vaccine Passports

BY MIMI NGUYEN LY  November 13, 2021 Updated: November 13, 2021

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee signed a sweeping measure into law on Friday that will largely ban COVID-19 vaccine passports and restrict the enforcement of mask mandates across the state.

The measure, HB 9077/SB 9014, was passed by the state legislature last month in a three-day special legislative session.

The new law (pdf) will take effect immediately, banning government entities, public schools, and many private businesses from requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccines as a condition of entry, or mandating vaccines among their staff.

Businesses that contract with the federal government—and thereby receive federal funds, including public universities—may be able to mandate vaccines and masks after they apply for and obtain approval from the state’s comptroller’s office, if they can make the case that not doing so could result in them losing out on federal funding.

Some companies and higher education institutions have already reached out about being exempt from the requirements. The comptroller will have an online form up and running for exemption applications by Monday, spokesperson John Dunn said, reported The Associated Press.

“I think most businesses don’t want the intervention that was delivered first by the federal government,” Lee told reporters on Wednesday, reported the Chattanooga Times Free Press. “We had a federal government who required businesses against their will to require their employees against their will to make a personal health decision which is an egregious overreach by the federal government.”

The new law also only allows public schools and government entities to mandate masks if there are at least 1,000 COVID-19 cases for every 100,000 residents within a 14-day period. No county in Tennessee has reached that figure since the start of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus pandemic. Even if a mask mandate is enforced, it would only be allowed to last for 14 days.

The measure would also allow for people who left their job because they refused the COVID-19 vaccine amid workplace mandates, to qualify for unemployment benefits.

The Epoch Times previously reported on other items in the sweeping Tennessee legislation in further detail.

The new measure comes after the Biden administration on Nov. 4 issued a rule via its Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), requiring businesses with 100 employees or more to require them to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Jan. 4, 2022, or to be tested weekly and wear a mask.

A federal court of appeals issued a temporary halt on the federal vaccine mandate on Nov. 6 as multiple legal battles play out over the mandate’s legality. The court reaffirmed its decision on Friday.

Republican lawmakers had cited the federal vaccine mandate as the main reason they called the three-day special session, The Associated Press reported.

According to the news agency, the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the National Federation of Independent Business of Tennessee said the new state law would put companies at risk of being sued while they try to navigate conflicting state and federal requirements on vaccine requirements.

Tennessee Republican House Speaker Cameron Sexton, who pushed for the special session, praised Lee’s signing of the new legislation.

“A big win 4 upholding the constitutional rights of all citizens!” Sexton said on Twitter. “Proud that we protected parental rights & the ability of Tennesseans to make health decisions free of government intrusion & coercion while also drawing a line in the sand against Biden’s unconstitutional overreach.”

Mimi Nguyen Ly is a world news reporter based in Australia. She holds a bachelor’s degree in optometry and vision science. Contact her at mimi.nl@epochtimes.com.

Source —Epoch Times

4 thoughts on “Tennessee Governor Signs Law to Ban COVID-19 Vaccine Passports

  1. People who are fully vaccinated get and easily spread covid. According to a recent study in the Lancet, “fully vaccinated individuals with breakthrough infections have peak viral load similar to unvaccinated cases and can transmit infection…” Likewise, “People who get vaccine breakthrough infections can be contagious,” says the CDC. Therefore, vaccinated people Even more compelling, …“vaccinated individuals still have the potential to infect others. Worse, one CDC report shows that vaccinated people can still be superspreaders. If vaccinated people still get and spread covid with the same viral load as unvaccinated people then vaccinated people should be tested for covid in the same manner as unvaccinated people, correct? Correct. CDC also states, “vaccination is NOT sufficient to prevent transmission of covid virus.” If vaccination is not sufficient to prevent transmission of covid virus, then why are employees being fired for not being vaccinated? An irrational fear of covid doesn’t entitle a workplace to discriminate against persons based on vaccine status. Simply put, there are no compelling or extraordinary reasons to selectively discriminate against unvaccinated people when vaccinated people can still infect others, have similar viral load and be contagious. Therefore, given the absence of logical grounds to continue such discrimination employers should immediately cease and desist such discrimination. An unvaccinated person carries the same level of safety as a vaccinated person, given both can get and spread covid. A more rational, fair and least restrictive solution would be to provide rapid covid testing for all employees, both vaccinated and unvaccinated, provide free testing at stores, schools and hospitals and require all people to wear masks indoors until there’s ample evidence of herd immunity. The highly transmissible Omicron variant could help countries reach herd immunity as cases continue to rise, health experts say. Therefore, someone’s irrational, idiotic, absurd fear of covid does not rise to the level of allowing discrimination. People who are fully vaccinated that claim to be “afraid” of unvaccinated are not following the science. Science says fully vaccinated people can, do and are spreading covid. Sources: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/cdc-report-shows-vaccinated-people-can-spread-covid-19/ar-AAML2bE https://www.thelancet.com/journals/laninf/article/PIIS1473-3099(21)00648-4/fulltext https://www.ibtimes.com/covid-19-herd-immunity-possible-omicron-cases-surge-experts-say-3369737d.
    Source: dailynewshungary.com https://dailynewshungary.com/top-court-vaccine-mandate-for-healthcare-workers-legal/

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