Healthcare workers and other employees around the country are being told they must get vaccines or lose their jobs. Rights and options vary depending on the specific situation.
More and more health care employers are requiring that employees receive a mandatory flu vaccine as a matter of company policy, or must face termination in failure to do so. However, many healthcare workers have legitimate reasons to turn down the vaccine, including medical reasons, religious objections, and conscientious objections. New Jersey law requires that employers must accommodate an employee who refuses a flu vaccination due to any of the above reasons.
Unfortunately, there have been lawsuits filed throughout the United States by healthcare workers who have been wrongfully terminated for refusing a flu vaccine for medical or religious reasons. In 2010, Hackettstown Regional Medical Center began requiring employees to receive a flu shot vaccine, unless an employee claimed a medical or religious reason. A New Jersey nurse was terminated refusing the flu shot vaccine and lost her benefits and in 2014, won a lawsuit against Hackettstown Regional Medical Center. While she didn't claim a religious or medical exemption at the time, the judges concluded that the hospital violated her right to freedom of expression by endorsing the religious-based exemption while denying her secular choice.
We have successfully litigated these flu vaccine cases. If you have suffered or are facing potential discipline for refusing a flu shot vaccine in New Jersey, contact Schorr & Associates, P.C. at 856-874-9090.