‘It would put us in a really tough financial position’: Some in NC say workplace vaccine mandate is a sensitive topic


(WJZY) — When it comes to enforcing a vaccine mandate in the workplace, some people in North Carolina say it’s a touchy subject.

“A lot of people say a lot of things,” said Daniel Theodosion as he was picking up food in the South End. “When you’re there, it’s like personal business.”

The issue is affecting all types of businesses. On the federal level, ten governors, including South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster, filed lawsuits challenging that federal mandate set by President Biden.

Gov. McMaster tweeted out, “South Carolinians should not be unlawfully forced to choose between their job and the vaccine. It’s unfortunate that we must sue @POTUS, but he has violated the constitution and has placed Palmetto State jobs at risk.”

A study conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation says 37 percent of unvaccinated employees say they will quit their job if forced to get the vaccine or take a weekly COVID-19 test. The number jumps to 72 percent of unvaccinated employees saying they will quit their job if a mandatory vaccine was the only option.

“I would quit my job because I don’t agree with that mandate or law…but it would really put me in a tough position,” said Ciara Johnson as she was heading to dinner with friends.

That is the other piece of the puzzle: the decision to make a living or stand up for what you believe in. The number of people who have quit shrinks to between five percent and nine percent according to a Kaiser study.

In Mecklenburg county, out of 4,207 employees, excluding the sheriff’s office and library system, there have been five full-time, and 11 part-time employees dismissed since the September deadline to be vaccinated or submit to testing.

At Novant Health, a spokesperson says fewer than 200 employees out of 35,000 were found to be non-compliant with the vaccine mandate. Some of those employees did receive a religious exemption.

People say they understand the dilemma.

“My husband doesn’t work, and I’m currently responsible for providing for both of us, so it would put us in a really tough financial position,” Johnson said.

Many say they hope the choice is left up to them. For now, they will have to wait and see what happens.

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