Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, along with Florida Speaker Chris Sprowls and Senate President Wilton Simpson, on Monday announced several pro-medical freedom measures that will be on the legislative agenda for next week’s special session to “Protect Florida Jobs.”
“No cop, no firefighter, no nurse, nobody should be losing their job because of these jabs – we must stand up for people and protect their jobs and livelihoods,” Gov. DeSantis said this week. “What the federal government is doing is wrong. It is wrong to kick people out of work; it is wrong to try to micromanage businesses; and it is wrong to deprive key industries of people that we need.”
“Most importantly, what they are doing is unconstitutional and we have a responsibility to stand up for the Constitution and protect Floridians,” the Florida governor added. In response to Biden’s assault on Americans’ liberties, he said he “called a special session of the Florida Legislature to address this, and today I am proud to roll out our agenda to Protect Florida Jobs.”
The legislative agenda DeSantis presented prohibits private businesses from mandating the vaccine, but it still provides employees with protection if a business establishes a vaccine policy. Protection includes vaccine exemptions for health and religious reasons, for pregnant women or women who plan to be pregnant, and employees who previously recovered from Covid-19.
“These may be the strongest protections for both private- and public-sector employees anywhere in the country. I want to thank Speaker Sprowls and President Simpson for stepping up to make this possible,” said DeSantis.
If the laws are passed after the special session, employers will be obligated to present employees with the choice of periodic Covid-19 testing or PPE as an alternative to the vaccine. Employers who fail to comply will face up to $10,000 for businesses with 99 employees or less and $50,000 per violation for businesses with 100 and more employers.
Government entities will also be prohibited from mandating vaccines.
DeSantis has made similar accommodations for students across the state by prohibiting any educational institution from requiring its students to be vaccinated. School districts are banned from requiring students to wear masks. And they “may not quarantine healthy students.”
Gov. DeSantis is currently in the midst of a legal battle with the Biden administration over the unconstitutional Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) employer vaccine mandate announced last week.
“We started with 15 days to slow the spread and now it’s get jabbed or lose your job,” the governor said. “We’re supposed to be a government of laws, not a government of men. This OSHA rule is 500 pages of a government of bureaucracy, a government that is being run by executive edict, not a government bound by constitutional constraints.”
“The State of Florida will immediately challenge the OSHA rule in court because it’s inconsistent with the Constitution and not legally authorized through Congressional statutes,” he vowed. “There is no federal police power and the federal government cannot unilaterally impose medical policy under the guise of workplace regulation. Individuals should make informed choices about their own healthcare. It is important to stand up for people’s individual ability to make decisions for themselves. And the practical result is that this is going to exacerbate a lot of the existing problems that we are seeing with the economy.”