On October 7th, the Associated Builders and Contractors sued OSHA in the Eastern District of Texas over the Agency’s Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces rules.  These rules require federal contractors to disclose health and safety violations in their bids for government contracts.  The agencies soliciting these proposals from the contractors are expected to

This post was written band originally posted on Kelley Drye’s Labor Days blog

Following up on a post from last week on the issue of mandatory flu vaccine policies, the EEOC seems to be on a march to challenge any employer – particularly hospitals – that denies an employee a requested exemption from a mandatory flu shot for religious reasons.Last week the EEOC sued Saint Vincent Health Center, a Pennsylvania hospital, claiming that the hospital had unlawfully fired six employees who were denied an exemption from the hospital’s mandatory flu vaccine policy.  According to the complaint, the hospital allotted 14 other employees exemptions from the vaccine based on health reasons, but denied the requests of the employees for religious-based exemptions because they “did not provide proof of religious doctrine.” The health center says they have a vaccination policy that allows employees to apply for exemptions to receiving the vaccine based on health concerns or religious beliefs.The EEOC alleges that from October 2013 to January 2014 six employees requested religious exemptions from Saint Vincent Health Center’s flu vaccination requirement based on sincerely held religious beliefs, and that the health center denied their requests. When the employees continued to refuse the vaccine based on their religious beliefs, the health center fired them.Saint Vincent officials said in a statement that the hospital’s “mandatory flu vaccination policy allows employees to apply for an exemption to the policy based upon religious beliefs or health concerns. Requests for exemption are always given careful and appropriate consideration. We respectfully disagree with the (commission’s) position and characterization of how the employee claims outlined in this lawsuit were handled by the hospital.”

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