Despite support from the Employment Equal Opportunities Commission that employers could require that “all employees physically entering the workplace be vaccinated against COVID-19,” at least 117 company employees attempted to sue the hospital, claiming it violates government guidelines and makes them “human”. Guinea pig.”
According to plaintiffs, federal law prohibits employees from getting vaccinated without the vaccines being approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. While the lawsuit was being filed in Texas State Court, it was referred to federal court at the request of the Houston Methodist. As a result, U.S. District Judge Lynn N. Hughes ruled Saturday that federal law does not prevent employers from giving this mandate, as the law in question does not apply to private employers.
“The hospital staff do not participate in a human study,” wrote Hughes. “They are licensed doctors, nurses, medical technicians, and staff. The hospital has not filed an application to test the COVID-19 vaccines on its staff.”
He went on to say that the mandate is a way to make the environment safer for employees and patients. “This is not a compulsion. Methodist tries to save lives without giving them the Covid-19 virus. It’s a decision made to make employees, patients and their families safer. “
Hughes ‘ruling looked at all of the plaintiffs’ arguments, including compulsory vaccination, which violates Texas law, and a comparison with forced medical experiments in Nazi Germany. “To equate the injection requirement with medical experiments in concentration camps is reprehensible,” wrote Hughes. “Nazi doctors conducted medical experiments on victims that caused pain, mutilation, permanent disability and, in many cases, death.”
Ultimately, Hughes concluded that plaintiffs “misinterpreted” and “misrepresented the facts” and “will not take anything out of the hospital”. If they had a problem with the applicable guidelines, they should find work elsewhere, he wrote.
Upon hearing the verdict, lead plaintiff Jennifer Bridges stated that she would continue to fight her case. “I’m not surprised,” she said USA today. “Methodist is a very big company and they are pretty well protected in many areas. We knew this was going to be a big fight and we are ready to fight it.” Bridges has also started a petition against mandatory vaccination by employers.
In response to the verdict, attorney and Conservative activist Jared Woodfill, who represents her and the other 116 plaintiffs, said, “We have taken the position that it should not be dismissed for a number of reasons, and we believe that one person to participate in a vaccine trial is illegal. “
“This is the first battle in a long fight,” Woodfill continued. “There will be many battles. Not just in this courtroom, but in courtrooms across the state. There are battles being fought in the higher courts, the 5th District, the Texas Supreme Court, even the United States Supreme Court. So this is just one battle in a bigger war. It’s the first round, if you will. “
Woodfill confirmed that they would appeal “if necessary” to the US Supreme Court.
Although the judge found and clearly stated that they had no case, the plaintiffs refused to give in.
According to Marc Boom, CEO of the Houston Methodist, the staff suspended from their positions made up only 1% of the hospital’s total staff. Boom noted that many other hospitals are working on similar initiatives but are just waiting for the verdict on this case to take action. “We can now leave this behind and continue to focus on unparalleled safety, quality, service and innovation,” said Boom after the verdict. “Our staff and doctors have made their decisions for our patients, which are always the focus of our actions” do. “
According to CBS news, According to that report, nearly 25,000 Houston Methodist employees were fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and at least two employees who worked in management chose to leave the vaccine.