If you refuse to be vaccinated or comply with workplace covid mandates, you could be fired from your job in Illinois, according to a new law in the state.

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker has signed into law an amendment to the Illinois Health Care Right of Conscience Act allowing employers to penalize employees if they refuse to follow workplace rules about covid, including mandatory vaccinations, testing, and other mandates.

The Illinois Senate voted 31-24 to approve the proposal; the measure passed out of the House on a 64-52-2 vote. Pritkzer signed the amendment into law Monday.

The Health Care Right of Conscience Act amendment bans employees from using their moral beliefs as a reason to refuse to comply with a LATEST: Will Illinois Employers Be Able To Fire Employees For Refusing Covid Vaccinations?workplace’s covid mandates, which could include mandatory vaccinations.

“Masks, vaccines, and testing requirements are life-saving measures that keep our workplaces and communities safe,” said Pritzker, who added he was grateful that the act “is no longer wrongly used against institutions who are putting safety and science first.”

The law doesn’t take effect until June 1, 2022. However, the law could go into effect on Jan. 1, 2022, if there is a new vote that garners greater support within the Illinois House and Senate. Pritzker would be expected to sign that into law should the vote take place to push up the mandate.

“We have effective tools to fight this pandemic — namely, vaccines, masks and testing — and all of our communities are safer when we use the public health and workplace safety protocols we know to work,” said Pritzker in a statement. “… This legislation clarifies existing law’s intent without infringing on federal protections. Ultimately, this means we can keep kids in school, businesses open, neighbors safe, and continue on the path to bring this pandemic to an end.”

The Health Care Right of Conscience Act has actually been a law since 1998 and was driven by healthcare providers having moral objections A greater portion of people in Scott County have been fully vaccinated than Rock Island County -- 58% compared to 50%.to performing abortions. It was originally put into place to protect health care providers — doctors, nurses, etc. — from being forced to perform medical procedures such as abortions if they opted out due to moral objections.

Over the years, the parameters of the law have been stretched to include other procedures, and, in past two years, the law has been loosely applied to include moral objections to covid-19 mandates based on medical applications such as mandatory vaccinations and covid tests.

According to reports, Gov. Pritzker had been working behind-the-scenes to revise the law to allow employers greater leeway in disciplining employees who refuse to adhere to covid mandates in the workplace.

Pritzker said “the act was “never intended to allow people to avoid public health guidance and jeopardize workplace safety during a global No Jab, No Job? You Could Be Fired For Defying Covid Rules Under New Illinois Lawpandemic,” in a statement through his spokesperson. “The administration supports efforts to clarify the law, so it cannot be misinterpreted by fringe elements.”

The new amendment is expected to face many lawsuits and legal challenges after it’s implemented. Other states around the country which have tried to take similar actions have faced lawsuits under the Civil Rights Act, and two cases invoking the U.S. Constitution’s Free Exercise of Religion clause are proceeding in Maine and New York.

For ongoing coverage of this situation, continue to follow QuadCities.com.

 

No Jab, No Job? You Could Be Fired For Defying Covid Rules Under New Illinois Law
Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written over 50 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.
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No Jab, No Job? You Could Be Fired For Defying Covid Rules Under New Illinois Law

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