November 25, 2021 – The Big Three automakers and United Auto Workers say unionized workers will not be required to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
The statement from the joint COVID-19 task force of UAW, Ford, General Motors and Chrysler’s parent company, Stellantis, said workers are encouraged but not required to be vaccinated.
“In addition to encouraging members to disclose their immunization status, the task force continues to urge all members, colleagues and their families to get immunized and receive booster shots against COVID-19, while understanding that “There are personal reasons that may prevent some members from being vaccinated, such as health problems or religious beliefs,” the statement said.
Masking will always be compulsory on construction sites.
“While it is understood that masks can be uncomfortable, the spread of the Delta variant and recent data describing the continued high rate of transmission in certain geographic areas continues to be a serious health threat,” the communicated.
The position of auto workers and automakers clashes with the Biden administration, which wants companies with more than 100 employees to mandate vaccinations.
This policy has been put on hold as it faces legal challenges that could reach the United States Supreme Court.
The UAW has over 400,000 active and 580,000 retired members in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.
Last week, Stellantis ordered non-union salaried workers in the United States to disclose their immunization status by December 4 and be fully immunized by January 5, The Detroit News reported. Ford issued a similar warrant for “most” salaried workers. General Motors has yet to institute a mandate over its American hired workforce.
All three automakers have imposed vaccines on auto workers in Canada.