Job Postings Requiring Vaccines Are Up 90%

by Maurie Backman | Published on Aug. 20, 2021

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Woman receiving vaccination from a healthcare professional.

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More and more employers are mandating vaccines. Here's what you need to know.

While millions of Americans are still unemployed after having lost their jobs during the pandemic, there are also millions of job openings available. And with so many employers being open to remote work, you may find that you have more options for getting a job than expected.

But workers today may largely have to abide by one rule if they want to get hired -- get a COVID-19 vaccine. Job posts requiring a coronavirus vaccine were up 34% on Aug. 7 when compared to the previous month, reports job site Indeed.

Meanwhile, job posts simply mentioning vaccination requirements without expressly citing COVID-19 are up 90% over the same period. And reading between the lines, it's easy to assume that even if job listings don't mention "coronavirus" or "COVID-19" in the context of vaccine mandates, that's the specific vaccine they're talking about.

Can jobs require people to get vaccinated?

Getting vaccinated against COVID-19 remains a personal choice. There's no government mandate requiring that workers get vaccinated. But nowadays, not having a vaccine could work against you if you're hoping to land a job.

And if you're wondering if it's legal for companies to require the vaccine, the answer is yes. Not only that, but employers have the right to terminate workers who don't get vaccinated if that violates company policy. And workers who are let go because they refuse to comply with their company's vaccine policies are not considered eligible to receive unemployment benefits. The reason? Those benefits only apply to workers who are let go at their jobs through no fault of their own, and violating a vaccine policy falls outside that scope.

What to do if you're not vaccinated

So what should you do if you can't get vaccinated for health-related or religious reasons? In that case, when you apply for a job, inquire about the company's exemption policy. Employers that insist on vaccines for current workers are generally required to offer exceptions for people who fall into these categories.

Now if you don't have medical concerns or religious constraints preventing you from getting vaccinated, there's another approach you can try -- ask if it's possible to be hired as a full-time remote employee. Many companies are open to the idea of employees who work from home, and if you're not coming into an office building, your vaccination status may not matter.

Of course, one thing to keep in mind is that you may have to accept a lower salary for a remote job than you would for a job that has you reporting to an office. But that may be a sacrifice worth making. A growing number of companies are enforcing vaccine policies in an effort to keep their workers safe and combat the ongoing COVID-19 surge. Though earning less money may make it more difficult for you to pay your bills or add to your savings, these days, if you're not ready to get a vaccine, then you may need to be flexible if you want to get hired.

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