Survey: 7 in 10 American Workers to Quit If Ordered to Get Vaccinated

Survey: 7 in 10 American Workers to Quit If Ordered to Get Vaccinated

A real possibility or just a bluff?

More than seventy percent of American workers have indicated that they would quit their jobs if their employers eventually mandate coronavirus vaccines, according to a new survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF).

However, that figure was found to sink to thirty-seven percent if the workers have an option to take weekly coronavirus tests, noted the findings that were published in the October 2021 Vaccine Monitor Report. Data was gathered via phone interviews with more than one thousand five hundred adults.

Calling Bluff?

Liz Hamel, vice president and director of public opinion and survey research at KFF, said in an interview earlier this month per CNN, that many unvaccinated workers might not follow through on their intention to quit.

“What people say in a survey, and what they would do when faced with loss of a job can be two different things,” she said.

Early data is supporting her claims, as the survey further revealed that only five percent of unvaccinated adults said that they have left a job due to a vaccine mandate.

Of those surveyed by KFF in October, roughly twenty-five percent confirmed that their employer has required them to get vaccinated—which is up from nine percent in June and nineteen percent in September.

“Right now, only a quarter of workers say that their employer has required them to get a vaccine, so it’s still quite hypothetical for these workers who say they would leave their jobs,” Lunna Lopes, a senior survey analyst at KFF, told CNBC.

Still, she added that she hopes the survey results will offer a “sense of people’s attitudes” toward company vaccine mandates.

Vaccination Mandate

Early last month, President Joe Biden announced a mandate for businesses with one hundred or more employees to ensure that they are vaccinated or tested weekly for the coronavirus. The wide-ranging mandate, still under review, is estimated to cover approximately two-thirds of the workforce in the private sector.

However, groups like the National Association of Manufacturers have pushed back strongly on the mandate, saying that losing even a few workers could have significant consequences.

“At small facilities with barely more than one hundred employees in particular, the departure of even one highly valued team member could lead to production challenges if not managed or planned appropriately,” Robyn Boerstling, a top lobbyist for the manufacturers’ group, wrote in a letter to the federal government.

“For larger companies, even losing 1 percent of a production team could have operational consequences given the specialized nature of a skilled manufacturing worker,” he added.

Moreover, other business groups, particularly those in retail, have asked the White House to delay the mandate until at least after the holiday season.

Ethen Kim Lieser is a Washington state-based Science and Tech Editor who has held posts at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek, and Arirang TV. Follow or contact him on LinkedIn.

Image: Reuters