Letter: Businesses should be kind to their employees
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To the editor:
The CDC website (Dec. 20, 2021) states: “CDC expects that anyone with the Omicron infection can spread the virus to others, even if they are vaccinated or don’t have symptoms.” Happily, news outlets all over the world, while noting its rapid transmission, are reporting that omicron is much milder than its predecessors, resulting in significantly reduced serious illness, hospitalization and death. “Signs that it [omicron] may cause milder symptoms than previous strains have offered some relief.” (Reuters, Jan. 7, 2022)
And so as new information based on the most recent scientific findings regarding COVID, variants, and related shots is brought forth, it would seem to follow logic that guidelines should be updated accordingly.
And so my question is, shouldn’t this new information render obsolete the rules and guidelines in the workplace regarding mandatory vaccinations? Obviously everyone can choose to either receive or refuse the shots, but now it is clear that transmission is equally spread by anyone, whatever their vaccination status. And even with the Delta variant, which has now been largely replaced by the milder Omicron, Dr. Fauci stated that in comparing the vaccinated and unvaccinated, the viral load in those infected (symptomatic or not) was very similar, and those in either group could transmit. (The Hill, August 1, 2021; Bloomberg, October 28, 2021.)
I would hope that companies and businesses who let employees go simply on the grounds that they chose not to receive a particular vaccine will consider opening the door to rehire those who might opt to return to their former jobs. This would not only be logical but it would be kind, it would help in solving staff shortage problems, and provide relief for many families. We may have differing opinions on COVUD and what are the best options to address it, but I think we can all agree on the slogan, “Be Kind.”