Healthcare workers all over Florida staged a protest against a vaccine mandate in Tallahassee on Tuesday, November 16th. Inside the Florida Capitol Complex, Republican lawmakers tried to fast-track the legislation to make businesses opt-out of vaccine requirements.

If the law pushes through, it would include hospitals. According to a news report, about 200 healthcare workers made their voices heard at the protest. Most of them said they served on the frontlines during the pandemic, and most of them got COVID-19 for refusing the vaccine. 

One healthcare worker protesting the vaccine mandate in Tallahassee, Christopher Helenthale, recounted how he served at the frontlines when it wasn’t convenient, they didn’t have vaccines, and they didn’t have correct PPE. Helenthale noted it was a death sentence at the time, adding he later got the Coronavirus but recovered from it. The healthcare worker said he volunteered to work with COVID-19 patients so that others wouldn’t have to face the risk. However, he now faces the possibility of losing his job if he doesn’t get vaccinated. 

Republican Wilton Simpson said it’s wrong for the politicians to say healthcare workers who got them through the crisis can lose their jobs if they refuse to get vaccinated. He noted that’s why they are creating the opt-out option, and Florida is the first state to do so. The lawmaker added that it sends the message that Florida stands for freedom. The state’s lawmakers are expected to vote and wrap up the session this week. 

Currently, Florida law allows healthcare workers who contract COVID-19 to receive workers’ compensation as long as they get the virus when performing a work function. However, there are usually roadblocks to getting compensation as a healthcare worker. 

Our Florida workers’ compensation lawyers can help you take out the roadblocks. Contact us today.