Wisconsin business, restaurant groups react to Biden’s vaccine mandate

Published: Sep. 9, 2021 at 10:14 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Some Wisconsin manufacture and restaurant trade groups are already coming out against President Joe Biden’s executive order mandating employers with 100 or more workers to require vaccinations or subject their employees to weekly testing.

As for employees, however, the picture is much more nuanced as they say prioritizing health and safety is important.

Case in point, Joshua Campbell, who has two jobs at Green Bay area manufacturing sites. He works for JBS Green Bay and for RGL, a logistics company that supports Procter and Gamble, working in spaces with dozens of employees. Campbell said he made the decision to get vaccinated.

“I’m willing to do anything for my community to protect the community, that’s just my personal decision,” Campbell said. “I respect others and I know others that are sick and are elder, things of that nature, and I don’t want somebody not to be around or feel uncomfortable because I didn’t get the shot.”

While he doesn’t believe vaccines should be forced on employees, Campbell called on businesses to educate workers with credible sources on the science behind the COVID-19 vaccines.

“I feel that we need more people to educate them so then they have a foundation to base it off of,” Campbell said.

Action 2 News reached out to several business organizations, with some expressing uncertainty over the impact this will have on hiring and on the incentives companies are offering to encourage employee vaccinations.

Wisconsin Manufactures and Commerce released a statement to Action 2 News:

Wisconsin Restaurant Association President and Chief Executive Officer Kristine Hillmer told Action 2 News her organization needs to “get further clarity on enforcement and potential penalties, it’s also unclear what will happen. On the enforcement front, what will it mean if local law officials cannot enforce?”

Wisconsin U.S. Rep. Mike Gallagher (R - Green Bay) has already issued a statement criticizing President Biden’s decision.

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