According to President Biden’s workplace Covid-19 vaccine rule, all employers with more than one hundred employees should have them vaccinated.
Disney World, near Orlando, Florida, is among those employers and has been following these rules until recently when it put them on hold.
This was after Gov. Ron DeSantis signed legislation that requires all businesses and employers in Florida to allow their employees to choose whether they want to be vaccinated or not.
Before this legislation, executives from Walt Disney, United Parcel Service Inc., and other companies had organized a meeting with officials from the White House to discuss President Biden’s Covid-19 rule. The main concern was how the rule would affect labor and supply chain woes.
The organizations were citing that the rule could worsen the situation of these two. Therefore, they had to get some clarification from the officials. The time required for the businesses to implement the rule also needed clarification.
On the other hand, Gov. DeSantis justifies the legislation by saying that the vaccine may affect those anticipating getting pregnant soon. He also says that there is no guarantee that if someone is vaccinated, they will not be infected by the virus again.
As a matter of fact, those who have been vaccinated are also at risk of getting infected as much as those who have not. Therefore, the vaccine does not provide total immunity as expected, and therefore, there is no point in forcing it on people.
On top of this, the legislation also calls for businesses to be fined if they violate it. Large businesses such as Disney will be fined fifty thousand dollar while the small ones will part with a ten thousand dollar fine. The fine also applies if the employer will fire an employee for refusing to comply with President Biden’s vaccine mandate.
Before this, Disney had announced that it would have all its employees vaccinated before the fall of this summer. Guests would also be required to provide proof of vaccination before they are allowed entry into Disney World. According to a Disney spokesperson, this move ensured that all people within the periphery of Disney, regardless of whether they are employees or guests, would be protected against Covid-19. In this regard, over 90 percent of active Disney employees in Florida had already been vaccinated.
Even though Disney will follow the legislation, it still believes that vaccination is the right thing to do. It will only consider the new developments as appropriate, meaning they are not satisfied with them. That is because Florida was among those states with the highest number of infections and deaths.
Subsequently, many health experts endorsed vaccination. This includes the American Medical Association that urged all the United States companies to follow the vaccination mandate that Biden had rolled out.
It is not the first time that the Gov. DeSantis has moved contrary to vaccination and Democratic policies. According to reports, he is a front runner for the nomination by the Republican Party to run for Presidency in the next election. This could be why he is against most of the current administration’s legislation.
President Biden Administration’s rule had also faced resistance from republican-owned businesses and groups, citing that it violated their civil rights. They filed lawsuits regarding this, and the court of appeal in Louisiana blocked the rule. More lawsuits will also be consolidated in a federal court in Ohio, and the outcome could be the same because most of the judges there had been appointed by the republicans. To this end, Disney could not mandate guests and employees to be vaccinated.
However, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has held meetings with influential businesses in the US, such as Disney, to lobby them to support the vaccination rule. Besides, if the employees have to be tested, there is a need to discuss who will pay those costs. Employees or employers.
The business community cited that the implementation period cannot be during the holidays. It is the time when people do their shopping hence if restrictions are put, it will affect their retail business. They, therefore, suggested that the best time could be the beginning of 2022. The same also applies to Disneyland. Holidays are when most people want to visit there.
Following this agreement, Disney Cruise Line has been urging its passengers aged five years and older to get vaccinated since Jan. 13, 2022. It requires that all vaccine-eligible guests, whether local or international, with the intention of cruising with them, to get fully vaccinated as per the guidelines of the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Those who are not eligible to be vaccinated are required to provide proof that they are Covid-19 negative. The test must have been taken within the last four days before the trip. The non-eligible guests could include children below the age of four and those between five and eleven years. However, if they do not have the test, they can take it at Disney and complete it first before they are allowed to cruise. The test should be a lab-based PCR test, NAAT test, or Rapid PCR test.
Disney Cruise Line is the first major cruise line to call for younger kids to be vaccinated. This move has been supported by Thea Tidman, who said that it is absolutely amazing. He and his brother were about to go for the first cruise since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and only signed because vaccination was required for all guests onboard at Disney Cruise Line. The US CDC has also approved the Pfizer vaccine for kids aged five to eleven. It is not wise to vaccinate adults only because it is crucial to protect children as well.
Those against this move cited that Disney Cruise Line will lose some customers who are unwilling to have their kids vaccinated. According to Nick Lill of Orlando, some people say the vaccine is not safe for children and would rather cancel their trips. True to these words, there were some cancellations. The trip will cover five nights moving to Nassau, the Bahamas, and Disney’s private island from Port Canaveral. It is a great disappointment to those who had already booked but have no intention of vaccinating their kids.
Nevertheless, President Biden has continued to urge Disney and other large businesses to have everyone on board vaccinated. He said that the patience of his administration is growing thin toward the millions of people refusing to get vaccinated and those who are putting obstacles in the way of vaccination. Doing so will cost everyone in the United States, and he is not willing to take that risk. While campaigning for office, he promised that he would get the pandemic under control, and vaccination is a significant step towards realizing that objective.
Regardless of the urging of the President, only 62 percent of vaccine-eligible Americans have been vaccinated. The rest are yet to. The reasons behind their stance are primarily political and economic. As stated earlier, they think that mandating people to get vaccinated infringes their right to liberty. They believe they have the freedom to make their own choices without the federal government’s influence.
In July last year, the President had said that the US was closer than ever to declare independence from Covid-19. If all Americans could take their shots, not only those intending to cruise on a Disney ship, then a lot more could be achieved as far as terminating the virus is concerned. On top of this, the fast-spreading Delta variant also threatens a new wave of sickness and death.
According to the administration medical officials, 97 percent of the people in hospitals due to Covid-19 infection have not been vaccinated and do not want to. They are also against masking and maintaining social distance. Even worse is that they contribute a higher percentage of those who pass away. Disney is not willing to take this risk on its Cruise Line. There is not much space in a ship, and the only way to ensure the safety of all guests and employees is to have everyone vaccinated.
In conclusion, Disney World had put mandatory vaccination for its employees and guests on hold following the executive order by Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida. However, the same does not apply to its Cruise Line since all people must be vaccinated before being allowed on board. Those not eligible must provide a test to prove that they are negative. Therefore, vaccination is not mandatory if you intend to visit Disney World. However, if you plan to cruise with them, you have no choice but to get vaccinated.
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