The memo from Alaska Industrial Hardware makes it clear: All employees shall be vaccinated against Covid-19 by August. Or else.
Alaska Industrial Hardware is a subsidiary of Bering Straits Native Corporation, which states that the vaccination is “necessary for BSNC’s long-term continuity, the health and well-being of employees, and an important health and safety measure toward ending the pandemic. The CDC has determined that COVID-10 vaccines are safe and highly effective in preventing the spread of COVID 19 and recommends that, with few exceptions, everyone should get vaccinated in order to prevent serious, life-threatening complications from COVID-19.”
With that, the BSNC board of directors mandated all employees of the BSNC companies be vaccinated immediately, unless a “reasonable accommodation” is approved. Those employees out of compliance by Aug. 1, 2021 will be placed on unpaid leave.
Rep. David Eastman tried to have the Alaska House of Representatives consider a “sense of the House” on whether mandatory vaccinations should be allowed in Alaska as a condition of employment. His efforts fell short after Speaker Louise Stutes shut him down and referred the matter to several committees for what is known as “death by committee.”
Vaccine passports are widely debated for travel and for participation in large-scale events such as concerts and sports competitions. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has ordered their use.
Last month, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an executive order banning the use of vaccine passports to restrict admissions to sites including movie theaters, sporting events, theme parks and airplanes.
“It’s completely unacceptable for either the government or the private sector to impose upon you the requirement that you show proof of vaccine to just simply be able to participate in normal society,” he said. He pointed out the privacy concerns over corporations having access to vaccine data.
“You want the fox to guard the henhouse?” he said. “Give me a break.”