(Washington) Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott announced Monday that he has prohibited all entities in his state, including private companies, from imposing a vaccine requirement on their employees or consumers.
“The COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective and is our best defense against the virus, but it should always be voluntary, not forced,” he wrote on Twitter.
In his tweet, the governor issued a press release announcing the passed executive order, which states that “No entity in Texas can compel a person, including an employee or consumer, to be vaccinated against COVID-19 if for some reason of personal conscience they oppose it, on the basis of a religious belief, or for medical reasons.”
The move comes a month after Joe Biden announced that vaccination will be mandatory for nearly 100 million workers, federal government officials and private sector employees.
His announcement caused an uproar among Republicans who immediately threatened, in the name of individual liberties, legal action.
Mr Abbott, who is known to have been staunchly opposed to being asked to wear a mask, tested positive for COVID-19 in August after attending a public indoor event. The governor was fully vaccinated.
While these decisions against the need to vaccinate and wear a mask earned him the support of followers of former President Donald Trump, they were met with heavy criticism from Texas Democrats.
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