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12 States Sue to Block Biden Vaccine Mandate on Healthcare Workers
The lawsuit, filed on Monday, argues the vaccine mandate for healthcare workers, issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, exceeds the agency’s statutory authority and breaches the Social Security Act’s ban on regulations that control the hiring and firing of healthcare workers.
The attorneys general of Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah and West Virginia are all listed as plaintiffs in the lawsuit. Last week, 10 other states filed a lawsuit against the administration’s requirement, calling it “unconstitutional and unlawful.”
Hundreds Protest School COVID Vaccine Mandate at the California Capitol
California’s mandate will require students to get the shot once the vaccine gets full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Parents can cite personal beliefs and opt out, but families at the protest feared it will only be a matter of time before legislators pass a law to get rid of that option, like with other required school immunizations.
Oklahoma National Guard Rejects Pentagon’s Coronavirus Vaccine Mandate
The Oklahoma National Guard has rejected the Defense Department’s requirement for all service members to receive the coronavirus vaccine and will allow personnel to sidestep the policy with no repercussions, an order from the governor that could serve as a blueprint for other Republican-led states that have challenged Biden administration mandates.
Brig. Gen. Thomas Mancino, appointed this week by Gov. Kevin Stitt (R) as adjutant of the state’s 10,000 National Guard soldiers and airmen, on Thursday notified those under his command that they are not required to receive the vaccine and won’t be punished if they decline it.
It’s an extraordinary refusal of Pentagon policy by the general and follows Stitt’s written request to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin seeking suspension of the requirement for Guard personnel in the state.
Pentagon Threatens Oklahoma National Guard: Says It Can Force Them to Comply With Biden’s Vaccine Mandate
On Monday, the Department of Defense publicly addressed Oklahoma’s move to reject the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for its National Guard troops, asserting that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin “has the authority to require these vaccines for all members of the force.”
Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby told reporters on Monday that Secretary Austin has that authority “to establish readiness requirements for all members of the Department of Defense and that includes the National Guard,” but said he didn’t want to “hypothesize about potential outcomes” relating to the Oklahoma National Guard’s refusal to comply to mandate.
Texas Sues Biden Administration for Requiring Healthcare Workers Get COVID Vaccine
In Texas’ latest legal challenge targeting federal vaccination mandates, Attorney General Ken Paxton is suing the Biden administration over its recent orders requiring health workers to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Paxton’s lawsuit comes days after he sued the Biden administration over a different COVID-19 vaccination rule ordering big businesses to require their staff to get vaccinated or regularly get tested for the virus. Last month, Paxton filed a separate lawsuit against the Biden administration over its coronavirus vaccine mandate for federal contractors.
Facebook Accused of Continuing to Surveil Teens for Ad Targeting
The adtech giant formerly known as Facebook is still tracking teens for ad targeting on its social media platforms, according to new research by Fairplay, Global Action Plan and Reset Australia — apparently contradicting Facebook’s announcement this summer when the tech giant claimed it would be limiting how advertisers could reach kids.
In the latest problem for Facebook/Meta, the adtech giant has been accused of not actually abandoning ad targeting for teens but, per the research, it has retained its algorithms’ abilities to track and target kids — continuing to maintain its artificial intelligence’s ability to surveil children so it can use data about what they do online to determine which ads they see in order to maximize engagement and boost its ad revenues.
Court Lottery Gives Biden Administration a Chance to Revive COVID Vaccine Mandate
Lawsuits filed around the country challenging the Biden administration’s workplace COVID-19 vaccine rule are expected to be consolidated in a single federal appeals court on Tuesday, giving the government a chance to revive a rule that was blocked last week.
On Friday, a three-judge panel on the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans blocked the rule, calling it a “one-size-fits-all sledgehammer that makes hardly any attempt to account for differences in workplaces.”
But on Tuesday, a federal judicial panel is expected to select — by lottery — an appeals court to oversee all of the lawsuits that have been brought. There are 13 federal appeals courts and the rule has been challenged in at least 10 of them by business groups, Republican-led states, employers and unions.
Austria Locks Down Most of the Unvaccinated, Unleashing Heated Discussions Across Europe About How to Tackle the Latest COVID Surge
In Austria, approximately two million people who are unvaccinated or do not have proof of a recent recovery from COVID-19, are only allowed to leave their homes for work, to shop for essentials, or for emergencies. The new rules went into effect on Nov. 15.
On Nov. 16, the Dutch parliament will debate the possible introduction of what in Austria, Germany, and the Netherlands is termed the 2G model. In Dutch, 2G denotes the words “gevaccineerd” (vaccinated) and “genezen” (recovered), while in German 2G refers to the words “geimpft” (vaccinated) and “genesen” (recovered).
Replacing the 3G rules with a 2G system is considered a drastic move by some. The 2G system effectively excludes most unvaccinated people from, among other things, indoor dining, attending concerts, and going to bars.
Navy Sailors Who Refuse COVID Vaccine Will Be Discharged, Face Other Administrative Actions
“In order to ensure a fully vaccinated force, U.S. Navy policy is to process for separation all Navy service members who refuse the lawful order to receive the COVID-19 vaccination and do not have an approved exemption,” the NAVADMIN said in a statement Monday.
Sailors who don’t comply and are only separated for refusing the vaccine could receive as low as a general discharge under honorable conditions, Navy Times reported. Sailors who reject the vaccine could also lose education benefits, promotions and bonus pay.
Google’s Military Cloud Deal Is Still Ruffling Feathers Internally
Google’s artificial intelligence principles state the company will not pursue technologies that cause or are likely to cause overall harm; weapons, or other technologies designed specifically to hurt people; surveillance tech that “violates internationally accepted norms,” or technologies whose purpose contravenes widely accepted principles of international law.
Whether or not the majority of Google’s employees oppose this idea is yet to be seen. What we do know is that Google’s employees are vocal and politically charged, and have no problem voicing their opinion or even quitting their job in protest.
Belgium to Make COVID Shots Mandatory for Health Workers
Health workers in Belgium who don’t want to get vaccinated against COVID-19 will face losing their jobs.
Amid a surge of coronavirus cases that has led hospitals in Belgium to reserve half of their 2,000 ICU beds for COVID-19 patients, Belgium’s federal government finalized a draft bill late Monday to make vaccinations mandatory for healthcare workers.
Starting Jan 1, the workers have a three-month window to get their shots. During that period, those who remain unvaccinated will be notified of a suspension of their contract unless they can provide a certificate of recovery from COVID-19 or negative tests on a regular basis, and will be temporarily unemployed.
Authorities in India Are Planning a New Lockdown Not to Combat COVID, but Air Pollution
Authorities in India plan to enforce a new lockdown to combat air pollution in New Delhi, the world’s most polluted capital city.
Pollution levels in some parts of city have registered off the charts several times over the past fortnight. On Tuesday, the air quality index scored 437 out of a maximum 500 points.
At an emergency meeting Tuesday, New Delhi officials said they were planning a weekend lockdown and work-from-home order to counter the issue.