A federal appeals court on Friday reinstated President Biden’s mandate requiring all large private employers to ensure their staff is either vaccinated or tested weekly for COVID-19.
The ruling, issued by the Cincinnati-based 6th US Circuit Court of Appeals, reversed a stay issued by another court that had blocked the requirements nationwide.
The panel, divided in a 2-1 decision, said legal challenges to the mandate would most likely fail. Ten Republican-led states had sued the government over the order, which is expected to be appealed to the Supreme Court for an emergency ruling.
The mandate — issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration in September — states that employers must make sure all workers have the COVID-19 shot or are undergoing weekly tests by Jan. 4. Those that fail to comply face a $14,000 fine per infraction.
Roughly 84 million workers will be affected nationwide.
The 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans paused the administration’s mandate in November, saying it had “grave statutory and constitutional” concerns about the order requiring businesses to ensure their staffs are vaccinated against COVID-19 or are tested weekly and wear masks.
The White House had asked the federal appeals court to overturn the ruling, citing “the grievous harms” the virus can have on public health.
With Post wires