AUSTIN (KXAN) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order Monday stopping any entity in the state from requiring COVID-19 vaccinations of their employees or consumers.
“No entity in Texas can compel receipt of a COVID-19 vaccine by any individual, including an employee or a consumer, who objects to such vaccination for any reason of personal conscience, based on a religious belief, or for medical reasons, including prior recovery from COVID-19,” the executive order, GA-40, reads.
This comes after the Biden administration last month announced sweeping vaccine mandates requiring all employers with 100+ workers to either mandate vaccines or test workers weekly.
In the order, Abbott says Biden’s mandates are “another instance of federal overreach” and the administration is “bullying” private entities into enacting vaccine mandates.
Some private companies have already issued vaccine mandate for workers, including some airlines. Hundreds of United Airlines employees face termination for not complying with its vaccine mandate, according to CNBC.
Some hospital systems are also requiring the vaccine. Baylor Scott & White required all employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by the beginning of this month, unless granted an exemption. Ascension Seton says its vaccine requirement deadline is Nov. 12.
Failure to comply with GA-40 can result in fines, according to the document. The order overtakes any conflicting order issued by local officials. The governor is also adding the issue as an item to the third special session agenda.
In late August, Abbott issued a separate executive order barring government entities from issuing a COVID-19 vaccine mandate.