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Healthcare workers protest vaccine requirement in NKY

Healthcare workers protest vaccine mandate outside St. Elizabeth
Published: Aug. 10, 2021 at 5:40 PM EDT
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EDGEWOOD, Ky. (WXIX) - Hundreds of hospital workers lined the streets outside of St. Elizabeth in Edgewood on Tuesday to protest the COVID-19 vaccine requirement.

The demonstration followed an announcement that Tri-State hospital workers have to get the vaccine by Oct. 1.

The response has been a mixed bag.

Some say the vaccine requirement forces them into something they are not sure of.

On the other hand, some think the mandate is an aspect of the job - keeping people safe.

St. Elizabeth nurse Sara Pinney said she is on the fence when it comes to getting the vaccine.

She is one of many who protested the vaccine mandate outside of the hospital on Tuesday.

“I feel like it’s not a good move on a lot of the Tri-State hospitals to give a date because I do know there is a lot of short staffing going on in a lot of the hospitals,” Pinney said. “There’s a lot of burnout given everything that’s happened over the past year and to give a deadline is a little risky on their behalf.”

Fellow St. Elizabeth worker Elizabeth Magg says she thinks hospital staff getting vaccinated is what’s right for those they care for.

“My thing is, it’s the right thing to do for our patients, it’s the right thing to do for our families, for our kids who can’t get vaccinated, and we trust these doctors to take care of us every day,” Magg said. “We trust them and their knowledge and everything that they do. So, I think even though it’s scary, the right thing to do is to trust the experts.”

For those who go against the requirement and choose not to get vaccinated, they risk losing their job.

“[Hospitals] are well within their rights to terminate people if they don’t get the shot,” Allen said. “Employers are allowed to place reasonable conditions on employment and the courts that have ruled in this so far have ruled that this is a reasonable restriction under the circumstances.”

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