President Joe Biden’s Occupational Safety Health Administration (OSHA) vaccine mandate has been sent to the White House for a final review, but before decisions are made, leaders in the trucking industry want to make sure their voices are heard.
The new requirements would impact over 80 million working Americans at companies with more than 100 employees. Employees must be vaccinated or submit weekly testing. Louisiana Motor Transport Association Executive Director Renee Amar said this will put a burden on an already struggling industry.
“Every single community in the state of Louisiana relies on a trucker to bring them their goods, I’ve never seen a one size fits all policy from the government that’s ever helped the business or this industry grow,” Amar said.
Already experiencing a driver shortage, there is also concern that workers may walk away from the trucking industry altogether.
“We knew we had 60,000 jobs that we needed to fill on the national level and then the pandemic hit. Our concern is that it’s going to hit the supply chain issue, which in turn that’s going to impact anything that they’re trying to do with Covid or recovery from this,” Amar said.
Amar believes workers should have the freedom to make health decisions for themselves. She hopes the Biden administration is listening to the concerns of the industries they will impact. She said trucking industry leaders will be examining all options to choose a path that protects their workers.
“…And if those are legal options that we need to take then I think we’re probably going to be willing to do that,” Amar said.
After final review and approval of the OSHA Vaccine Mandate, the next step is for OSHA to publish it in the Federal Register. This will make it a law.