1199SEIU EXEC VICE PRES OF MD/DC: WE DO NOT SUPPORT A COVID-19 VACCINE MANDATEJune 23, 2021
Baltimore, MD – 1199SEIU Executive Vice President of Maryland/DC Lisa Brown today released the following statement regarding plans to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for the staff of Maryland and DC's hospitals, nursing homes, and healthcare clinics:
“We do not agree with the decision to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for all healthcare staff.
As our union’s president George Gresham said, ‘A hard-handed approach will not work and will only create greater frustration for the healthcare heroes who have been battling this pandemic every day for the last 15 months.’
We agree that vaccination paired with free, regular, and accessible testing are important tools to help us move past this pandemic. To that end, 1199SEIU has held virtual town hall meetings about the vaccines, which have included medical information and personal stories of members who received the vaccine. Members who received shots also have happily shared their experiences with their coworkers one-on-one and in our bi-weekly vaccine newsletter. Healthcare facilities should similarly focus on providing vaccine education and easy access, rather than issuing a mandate.”
With over 450,000 caregivers, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in the nation. The 1199SEIU Maryland/DC Division represents over 10,000 members who work in major academic medical centers and other hospitals and dozens of long-term care facilities in Baltimore, Washington, D.C., and throughout Maryland.