If an employer adopts a mandatory vaccine policy, one exemption is a Title VII religion exemption. When an employee has a sincerely held religious belief that prevents the employee from taking a shot, the employer should consider an accommodation which might include mask wearing, social distancing, remote working, or increased isolation. An employer is not required to make an accommodation if the accommodation would create an undue hardship which is more than a minimal cost or burden to the business operations.
From the start, the accommodation may not be required in certain workplaces since the employer’s burden is less than the requirement under the ADA. Some items which could create an undue hardship might be cost or workplace safety. However, an employer should not summarily dismiss an employee’s religious exemption request.
For many people who did not grow up in church, studying G-d, studying religion, or who did not continue religious studies as an adult, the religious exemption regarding vaccinations may seem odd, ridiculous or perplexing.
Even some devout Christians, Jews and Muslims may not understand why a person may object to a vaccine based on religion. From the onset, there are many practicing, G-d fearing individuals who either don’t know of the issue or are accepting of the “vaccine” out of necessity (or for other reasons).
I am NOT an expert in this field. In fact, I know very little about the complaint. So, I decided to do a little light reading on the subject. Yes, I heard any social media post talking about the use of fetuses in developing or researching the COVID-19 “vaccine” was forbidden. And, I’ve read a few “fact checkers,” one even from mainstream media. That’s part of the research that everyone can find. Below are a few links to another viewpoint. After all, if we are not going to discriminate based on religious reasons, it would be helpful to learn more about the issue.
Children of G-d for Life’s (COGFL) vision is “to end the use of aborted children in scientific research and manufacturing.” Some people would say once the fetus is dead, we might as well help save another life out of the tragedy. However, COFFL “cannot settle for a culture that exploits the remains of unwanted children killed by abortion.” In fact, COGFL outlines the religious complaint against the use of fetal products and stem cell research. https://cogforlife.org/about/
You may agree with a woman’s right to choose. Many people do. But that doesn’t eliminate the religious belief of some that refuse to support or use or inject their body with a potential life-saving drug because their religious belief calls on them to do so. The point is not your belief, but the sincere religious belief of the objector.
Apparently, COVID-19 vaccines currently available may use a cell line derived from an aborted child. A brief explanation of the use in Moderna, Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Johnson and Johnson is provided on Children of G’d for Life’s website: COGFL C19 Vax Cell Line
It’s really not surprising, nor new, that politics can be part of the church. It’s not clear why Pope Francis refused to object to the COVID-19 vaccine recently. LifeSiteNews recently posted a blog discussing information provided by biologist Pamela Acker. Acker claims that spontaneous abortions are not always the right source for cells needed for experiments. Rather sometimes babies are delivered by cesarean section in order to extract the tissue while they still have a heartbeat. The baby is still alive, and may not have been given anesthesia during the tissue extraction. Pamela Acker reported at LifeSite News
Is Pamela Acker correct? I have no idea. But her claims are reiterated by Thomas Seidler at https://fetaltissue.org/
Still think this is a farce? Well, remember that the religious exemption must be based on sincerely held religious belief, and religion is defined very broadly. Of course, the vaccine labelling probably won’t say ingredient, “fetal cells.” But one ingredient may be “PER.CG Cell Lines” which are “derived from human embryonic retinal cells, originally from the retinal tissue of an 18-week-old [sic] fetus aborted in 1985.” What is PER.CG
The Johnson and Johnson vaccine did use PER.C6 per their own fact sheet, page 18, subpoint 13, paragraph two J&J C19 Fact Sheet
Employees: My advice to those claiming a religious exemption is provide your employer with enough evidence to support your claim. The employer may have heard of the issue being dismissed by media, and not know any more. Take a few minutes to educate them on the religious issue and on the low risk an asymptomatic employee is to the workplace.
Employers: My advice to employers. Do your homework. Are you really an expert in all religions and all subsets of all religions? If you are, how have you been able to devote any time to your work or your family? Before denying a religious exemption, listen to your employee. Don’t rely on making the exemption non-existent by claiming there is no way to ever accommodate an employee.
When working through a religious accommodation, stay calm and try to work through the issue.