Click Now To Support SB364, A Bill Protecting Floridians From Discrimination Based On Their Vaccine Status

Our Stand

  • Senator Joe Gruters (D 23) filed SB364 to protect Floridians from facing discrimination based on their vaccination decisions.  This is one of the most important bills of our time and needs your support today.
  • In the middle of nonstop media coverage of coronavirus and intense public pressure from government and community leaders, many people are wondering if they will be forced to get the COVID-19 vaccine to keep their job or source of income.
  • There are numerous reasons why someone might choose to decline the vaccine. Among the most common are conscientious objections, religious convictions, a history of prior vaccine injury and concerns over safety, including the lack of short and long-term safety data.
  • The U.S. Supreme Court has reasoned that in order to mandate a medical intervention there must be an epidemic that imperils the entire population. According to the CDC’s own data, for those under 70 the survivability rate of COVID-19 ranges from 99.5 percent to 99.9 percent. More importantly, the COVID-19 vaccine has not been shown to prevent transmission; it is merely supposed to lessen symptoms. There are a variety of preventative measures for coronavirus as well as treatments that have been successfully used by healthcare clinicians around the world.
  • As such, there is no basis upon which to require the vaccine; it is up to each person to decide how to care for their own body. But even if the state cannot require the vaccine, will employers be able to make choosing to get the vaccine a condition of employment?
  • It is unethical and immoral to mandate a fast-tracked vaccine for which there is no liability, or to limit a citizen’s ability to work based on their acceptance of an experimental medical intervention. As such, we are urging all Floridians to support SB364 to protect their right to informed consent and the freedom to decline the COVID-19 vaccine. 
  • Stand up for your basic human rights! Click below to email and tweet your local lawmakers to urge them to support SB364. Let them know that vaccination, especially the experimental COVID-19 vaccine, must remain voluntary without discrimination.

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There is a growing divide among Americans over whether they will get a COVID-19 vaccine. In the latest poll from the Pew Research Center, which surveyed more than 10,000 U.S. adults in September, about half of respondents (51%) said they would definitely or probably get a COVID-19 vaccine if it were available today. When Pew conducted the same poll months prior, 72% said they would get a COVID-19 vaccine when it became available. The respondents who would definitely get a coronavirus vaccine now stands at 21%, half of what it was in the spring. The sharp decline comes amidst widespread concerns over aspects of the vaccine’s developmental process, concern about side effects, and uncertainty over safety.

Click here to read the top five reasons the COVID-19 vaccine must be voluntary:

You cannot rely on the EEOC to protect the people’s choice and security of person. On December 16, 2020, the EEOC updated its guidelines to answer the question:

K.7. What happens if an employer cannot exempt or provide a reasonable accommodation to an employee who cannot comply with a mandatory vaccine policy because of a disability or sincerely held religious practice or belief? 

The guidance supports the practice of discrimination based on vaccine choice by allowing employers to require COVID-19 vaccines as a condition of employment and to even “lawfully” exclude the employee from the workplace when an employee chooses not to receive the vaccine for religious or medical reasons if

(1) no other legal protections apply, and

(2) the employer determines that an accommodation would be an undue hardship, more than a de minimus cost or burden, on the employer. (See Section K7).

Since we cannot rely on the EEOC for protection, it’s imperative to make sure state laws provide adequate protection.

The EEOC’s updated guidance acknowledges that:

“[T]he definition of religion is broad and protects beliefs, practices, and observances with which the employer may be unfamiliar [so] the employer should ordinarily assume that an employee’s request for religious accommodation is based on a sincerely held religious belief.”

But then the guidance contradicts itself by saying,

“If, however, an employee requests a religious accommodation, and an employer has an objective basis for questioning either the religious nature or the sincerity of a particular belief, practice, or observance, the employer would be justified in requesting additional supporting information.”

The EEOC’s position makes it clear that we cannot rely on the EEOC to protect medical needs or religious freedom.  An individual’s ability to work and live in society without penalty or discrimination must not depend upon participating in specific medical interventions. Florida must pass SB 364 to protect Florida residents at every level.

Florida Bill SB 364 makes it unlawful for a business or governmental entity to require individuals to present driver licenses and identification cards for specified purposes and from taking certain actions on the basis of individuals’ vaccination status and proof of immunity from any virus. It would also be unlawful for businesses and governmental entities to deny public accommodations thereby discriminating against individuals on the basis of vaccination or immunity status.

Vaccination is one approach to dealing with a virus such as COVID-19. It is not the only approach. It’s up to each individual to decide how to care for their body based on their own judgment and unique physiology. Individuals should not be asked to cast aside their own convictions (be it personal, ethical or religious) to follow the advice of public health officials whose policies are shaped and influenced by the multibillion-dollar pharmaceutical industry.

It’s no secret that the pharmaceutical industry stands to make unprecedented profit from vaccines for COVID-19, which has created an entirely new investment pipeline with a captured market. That market, which is supported by taxpayer dollars through Operation Warp Speed, stands to increase exponentially if the COVID-19 vaccine is made mandatory.

Floridians must stand up for their basic human rights NOW. Every individual has the right to informed consent and to decline a medical intervention. Urge your local lawmakers that medical mandates do not belong in a free society. Click to send a pre-drafted (and customizable) email and tweet urging your officials to support SB364, a bill to protect individuals from discrimination based on their vaccine status. Let them know that personal choice, not pressure or coercion, must be the only factor in getting the new vaccine. This is particularly true when it comes to meeting a person’s basic needs, like keeping your income source.

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