Boeing suspended its coronavirus vaccine mandate for U.S. employees on Friday after a recent U.S. District Court ruling halted President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate for federal contractors.
A Boeing spokesperson said:
Boeing is committed to maintaining a safe working environment for our employees, and advancing the health and safety of our global workforce. As such, we continue to encourage our employees to get vaccinated and get a booster if they have not done so. Meanwhile, after careful review, Boeing has suspended its vaccination requirement in line with a federal court’s decision prohibiting enforcement of the federal contractor executive order and a number of state laws.
Last month, workers from Boeing joined employees from other companies in a massive protest against the vaccine mandates.
Boeing’s vaccine requirement went into effect in October after Biden mandated that federal contractors vaccinate their workforce or implement regular testing. Although the initial deadline was December 8, the Biden Administration extended the deadline to January 4 last month.
Earlier this month, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia ordered the Biden administration to halt enforcement “in all covered contracts in any state or territory of the United States of America.”
Boeing vaccinated more than 90 percent of its employees while the mandate was in effect.
“The success of Boeing’s vaccination requirement to date positions the company well to comply with the federal executive order should it be reinstated in the future,” an internal Boeing announcement said.
However, over 11,000 Boeing employees sought an exemption from the mandate on religious or medical grounds. That number is roughly nine percent of the company’s U.S. workforce.
Boeing joins companies like General Electric, HCA Healthcare, Spirit AeroSystems, and Amtrak that recently suspended their vaccine requirements.