BREAKING: Iowa Covid Numbers Soaring, Will There Be A Statewide Shutdown?
BREAKING: Iowa covid-19 numbers are heating up as the weather cools down, pushing Iowa into the red zone of “high” contagion and causing some to call for a statewide shutdown and new mask mandates.
The 14-day positivity rate of COVID-19 for the state climbed from 8.9% to 9.2% in the last week, according to the Iowa Department of Public Health. Iowa has had 8,047 new positive cases in just the last week. Of those hospitalized with COVID-19, 75.8% are unvaccinated, while 87.1% of those listed in intensive care with COVID-19 are unvaccinated.
Numbers from the Iowa Department of Public Health show a negative trend for the state, demonstrating that it’s headed to higher numbers of COVID-19 positivity as the winter months begin, based upon numbers from last fall and winter.
Reynolds signed the bill that would allow employees to escape employer covid mandates, including vaccination mandates, and allow greater use of medical and religious exemptions for people to refuse covid restrictions.
The Iowa House and Senate had passed the bill Thursday.
It makes it tougher for businesses to
require employees to be vaccinated or submit to other covid protocols such as regular testing. The bill gives greater leeway for employees to claim medical and religious exemptions against covid employer mandates and guarantees that employees who do get fired for refusing to get vaccinated against covid are allowed to file for unemployment insurance.
“I am proud to sign this bipartisan piece of legislation today,” Reynolds said in a statement Friday night. “This is a major step forward in protecting Iowans’ freedoms and their abilities to make healthcare decisions based on what’s best for themselves and their families. This legislation also gives employees the assurance that they will still receive unemployment benefits despite being fired for standing up for their beliefs. As I’ve stated publicly numerous times, I believe the vaccine is the best defense against COVID-19 and we’ve provided Iowans with the information they need to determine what’s best for themselves and their families, but no Iowan should be forced to lose their job or livelihood over the COVID-19 vaccine.