An appeals court in the United States has frozen, on Saturday, the Biden administration’s attempt to have employees of U.S. companies with 100 or more employees who work in the U.S. get vaccinated against COVID-19 or get tested every week.
The appeals court cited “grave statutory and constitutional” concerns with the rule adopted by the Biden administration.
Following numerous lawsuits filed by Republican-led states, the Fifth Circuit Court ruled that the new rule, which will take effect on January 4, must be changed.
The court order was issued following a petition from a number of companies, organizations, and states, including Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Utah.
Separate legal challenges to the rule are being brought in other courts.
It is imperative that Biden’s administration must address the request for a permanent injunction against the rule by 5 p.m. on Monday.
Seema Nanda, Solicitor of Labor, said the Labor Department is “confident in its legal authority” to issue the rule, which will be enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
“The Occupational Safety and Health Act explicitly gives OSHA the authority to act quickly in an emergency where the agency finds that workers are subjected to a grave danger and a new standard is necessary to protect them,” she announced.
“We are fully prepared to defend this standard in court.”
COVID-19 kills on average 1,100 Americans a day, the majority of whom are unvaccinated.
Approximately 750,000 Americans have been killed by COVID-19.
Governors and others, with Republican backgrounds or affiliations, have vowed to challenge the rule, which was announced two days ago by Biden’s administration.
Republicans said the Biden administration had overstepped its legal authority.
The OSHA emergency safety authority was used to take action on the private sector vaccinations, officials said.
Among 1.9 million private-sector employers, OSHA estimates there are 84.2 million workers covered by the rule.
Approximately two-thirds of the nation’s workforce is covered by the government’s vaccine rules, according to the White House.