Is Gov. Northam’s vaccine mandate for all state employees legal?

Coronavirus

(WFXR) — If you’re questioning the legality of Gov. Ralph Northam’s vaccine mandate for all state employees, you’re not alone.

The mandate does not allow exemptions for medical or religious reasons. Any state employee who refuses to get the vaccine must take a weekly COVID-19 test.

According to Jason Malone, an attorney and associate professor with the College of Pamplin at Virginia Tech, the mandate is legal. While Northam did not state people who fail to comply would be fired, Malone said it is allowed.

It’s also allowed in most cases in the private sector, but he says it may be in a company’s best interest to find a compromise.

“The practical approach would be the employees should raise their concerns with the employer,” explained Malone. “Maybe propose some options that would help address the fears associated with virus-spread, and this would make sense especially in a tight job market with the costs in training new employees.”

Malone also said that this is an evolving area of law.

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