“I’m going to go down fighting.” American Airlines employee fighting back against COVID-19 vaccine mandate just announced by company
More than 18 months into this pandemic, shortages and delays are still everywhere.
The president’s executive orders apply to employees of the executive branch and federal government contractors.
Biden issued two executive orders on Thursday requiring vaccination against COVID for federal workers and contractors who work for the federal government. He also asked the Department of Labor to issue an emergency order requiring businesses with more than 100 employees to ensure their workers are vaccinated or tested on a weekly basis.
However, Biden’s order on federal workers applies to employees of the executive branch. The House of Representatives and the Senate belong to the separate legislative branch, and the courts to the judicial branch of the federal government.
Second Amendment supporters are expressing concern over President Biden’s move Thursday forcing large employers to vaccinate their employees, fearing that the logic behind the federal edict could be applied to confiscating guns or drastically limiting gun rights.
Biden announced that he is instructing the Department of Labor to mandate that all companies with 100 or more workers must vaccinate their employees or force them to be tested weekly.
“This is not about freedom or personal choice,” Biden said. “It’s about protecting yourself and those around you, the people you work with, the people you care about, the people you love.”
Some supporters of the Second Amendment fear that Biden’s comments, downplaying freedom and touting federal government control of public health, represent a danger to the rights of gun owners.
“If Biden is allowed to impose regulations without a vote by Congress simply because he decides it helps ‘public safety,’ there is no limit to what he can do,” gun advocate John R. Lott, president of the Crime Prevention Research Center, told Fox News. “He could use this same reasoning to impose any gun control regulation that he wanted.”
Alan Gottlieb, Chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, also expressed concern over Biden’s announcement.
Biden announced a sweeping plan that could force millions of unvaccinated Americans to get the COVID-19 shot
“We’ve been patient, but our patience is wearing thin,” Biden said of the roughly 80 million Americans who have yet to get the shot. “While America is in much better shape than it was seven months ago when I took office, I need to tell you a second fact: We’re in a tough stretch and it could last for awhile.”But Biden stopped short of mandating the vaccine for illegal immigrants attempting to cross America’s border, even though about 30% of immigrants held at federal detention facilities are refusing to be vaccinated — and they have the option to refuse
Meanwhile, more than 18% of migrant families who recently crossed the border tested positive for COVID before being released by Border Patrol. Another 20% of unaccompanied minors tested positive for the virus.
(KHN)In Northern California, the pastor of a megachurch hands out religious exemption forms to the faithful. A New Mexico state senator will “help you articulate a religious exemption” by pointing to the decades-old use of aborted fetal cells in the development of some vaccines. And a Texas-based evangelist offers exemption letters to anyone — for a suggested “donation” starting at $25.With workplace vaccine mandates in the offing, opponents are turning to a tried-and-true recourse for avoiding a covid-19 shot: the claim that vaccination interferes with religious beliefs.No major denomination opposes vaccination. Even the Christian Science Church, whose adherents rely largely on prayer rather than medicine, does not impose an official policy. It counsels “respect for public health authorities and conscientious obedience to the laws of the land, including those requiring vaccination.”
DERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. —
Protests continued at multiple school districts in Westmoreland County Wednesday as dozens of students and parents voiced their frustrations over the state’s mask mandate in schools.
Pittsburgh’s Action News 4 spoke with the Derry Area School District about how the district is handling frustrated families.
“I understand that frustration,” Derry Area Assistant Superintendent Greg Ferencak said. “We started off with a masks optional, but highly recommended and now we have to switch and there’s some confusion.”
Ferencak said the district’s original health and safety plan called for a change in policy in the event of a state or federal mandate. A small group of students and parents protested the decision to mandate masks in Derry each of the last two days.
“We are trying to let the voices of the students be heard and trying to be reasonable with them,” Ferencak said.
Ferencak said a failure to comply with the mandate could come with consequences for the district, including a loss of funding.
“We could be held liable for not following them through various complaints, willful neglect of duty, you name it,” Ferencak said.
(CNN)President Joe Biden on Thursday imposed stringent new vaccine rules on federal workers, large employers and health care staff in a sweeping attempt to contain the latest surge of Covid-19.The new requirements could apply to as many as 100 million Americans — close to two-thirds of the American workforce — and amount to Biden’s strongest push yet to require vaccines for much of the country.“We’ve been patient, but our patience is wearing thin, and your refusal has cost all of us,” Biden said, his tone hardening toward Americans who still refuse to receive a vaccine despite ample evidence of their safety and full approval of one — the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine — from the US Food and Drug Administration.He said vaccinated America was growing “frustrated” with the 80 million people who have not received shots and are fueling the spread of the virus. And he acknowledged the new steps would not provide a quick fix.“While America is in much better shape than it was seven months ago when I took office, I need to tell you a second fact: We’re in a tough stretch and it could last for awhile,” Biden said in an early evening speech from the White House.At the center of Biden’s new plan is directing the Labor Department to require all businesses with 100 or more employees ensure their workers are either vaccinated or tested once a week, an expansive step the President took after consultation with administration health officials and lawyers. Companies could face thousands of dollars in fines per employee if they don’t comply.Biden also signed an executive order requiring all government employees be vaccinated against Covid-19, with no option of being regularly tested to opt out. The President signed an accompanying order directing the same standard be applied to employees of contractors who do business with the federal government.He also said 300,000 educators in federal Head Start programs must be vaccinated and called on governors to require vaccinations for schoolteachers and staff.And Biden announced he would require the 17 million health care workers at facilities receiving funds from Medicare and Medicaid to be fully vaccinated, expanding the mandate to hospitals, home care facilities and dialysis centers around the country.“We have the tools to combat the virus if we come together to use those tools,” Biden said at the outset of what was billed as a major speech to tackle the latest phase of the Covid-19 pandemic.The new rules amount to the most dramatic steps to date to get more Americans vaccinated. Once cautious of vaccine mandates, the Biden administration is now wholly embracing them as vaccine hesitancy persists among certain groups.Administration officials acknowledged the requirement for large employers could be challenged in court. But they said their hope was to provide cover of federal rules to businesses who want to require vaccines for employees.The new rules come as the Delta variant tears through communities across the country, causing upticks in hospitalizations and deaths particularly in areas where vaccination rates remain low.
BY ANDREW GOLDSTEIN
The Pittsburgh Public Schools district’s plan to open for in-person instruction five days a week got a major boost Monday as members of the city’s teachers union ratified a contract that includes a provision giving district officials the power to adjust school start and end times.
The issue became a flashpoint in negotiations as the district sought the ability to modify the times so that school buses could run extra routes in the morning and afternoon — providing transportation to thousands of city students who may have not had a ride to school otherwise — but the union initially fought back against the idea.
“We’re hopeful that the district is able to get many students back in their seats,” Nina Esposito-Visgitis, president of the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers, said in an interview at the union offices on the South Side. “This was a very difficult part of the contract, but we’re hoping to bring lots of students back, and that this will be something that we continue to work on together.”
The contract will now go before the school board Wednesday night for final approval.
Dr. Anthony Fauci walked back his prediction Monday that it will take the United States more than one year to get control of COVID-19.
During an appearance on CNN, President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser offered an apology and said he meant to say the goal is actually within reach sooner — the spring of 2022 instead of the fall of next year as he said earlier in the day — but only if people holding out on getting vaccinated decide to get the jab.
“No, Anderson, I have to apologize,” he told anchor Anderson Cooper. “When I listened to the tape, I meant to say the spring of 2022, so I did misspeak. And in the conversation with Mary Louise Kelly, she was saying, when do I think we can get some control? I said if we can get through this winter and get really the overwhelming majority of the 90 million people who have not been vaccinated, vaccinated, I hope we could start to get some good control in the spring of 2022. I didn’t mean the fall. I misspoke, my bad.”
Earlier, on NPR , Fauci made the comment about the fall of 2022. He said it was contingent on widespread vaccinations, a contentious issue lingering more than eight months after the jabs became available to the public, as the more contagious delta variant causes a new spike in cases and health officials push for booster shots.
JOHNSTOWN, Pa. (WJAC) — A Philadelphia man is facing charges for refusing to wear a mask on an Amtrak train in Johnstown, officials say.
According to charging documents, 22-year-old Damier Bingham faces two misdemeanor charges related to disorderly conduct and delaying a train.
The Amtrak Police Department says the incident happened in June when Bingham refused to comply with the Transportation Security Administration’s mask mandate.
According to the federal requirement, Americans must wear masks while on public transportation to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib’s annual financial disclosure shows that she made thousands of dollars in rental income last year, despite being a co-sponsor of a bill to cancel rent during the COVID-19 pandemic.Tlaib joined fellow “Squad” Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., and other progressives in April 2020 to co-sponsor Rep. Ilhan Omar’s, D-Minn., bill to “institute a nationwide cancellation of rents and home mortgage payments through the duration of the coronavirus pandemic.”
She tweeted during the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020 that there should be a “moratorium” on mortgage and rent payments to “combat this public health crisis.”
“I’m joining Rep. @IlhanOmar and fellow colleagues for a press conference on the Rent & Mortgage Cancellation Act,” Tlaib tweeted earlier this year amid the re-introduction of the bill. “Our residents need help during this ongoing pandemic & this legislation seeks to provide that help to ensure our neighbors have the housing they need.”
PITTSBURGH — Giant Eagle is looking to hire more than 1,000 people across the Pittsburgh area.
To fill those positions, the company will host an in-store job fair at all of its supermarket locations.
During the job fair, candidates will meet with recruiters and could possibly get job offers the same day.Giant Eagle is looking to fill a number of positions across all shifts including personal shoppers, pharmacy technicians, deli and prepared food clerks, cashiers, bakers and more.
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Those interested in taking part in the job fair are encouraged to wear a mask or face covering.
Giant Eagle offers benefits like flexible scheduling, competitive wages, weekly pay, advancement opportunities, and paid time off.
Candidates who are interested should submit their applications in advance on Giant Eagle’s website to expedite the in-person interview process.
Jacinda Ardern announced that all New Zealand will be in the toughest, level-four lockdown for at least three days.
New Zealand was ordered into a strict nationwide lockdown Tuesday — after just one COVID-19 case was detected.
It was the first locally transmitted infection in the community in six months.
“The best thing we can do to get out of this as quickly as we can is to go hard,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said in a televised national address.
“We have seen what can happen elsewhere if we fail to get on top of it. We only get one chance,” she insisted.
Ardern announced that all New Zealand will be in the toughest, level-four lockdown for at least three days from Wednesday, with schools, offices and businesses closed and only essential services operational.
The biggest city, Auckland — where the unidentified 58-year-old man tested positive — would have a longer, seven-day lockdown, as would Coromandel, a coastal town where the infected person spent time.
A federal appeals court has dismissed a judge’s ruling that threw out Gov. Tom Wolf’s sweeping COVID-19 restrictions, saying the issue is now moot because statewide mitigation measures have expired and Pennsylvania voters have since constrained a governor’s emergency powers.
It’s not just food establishments that are having a tough time finding employees. Help wanted signs are posted outside of all kinds of businesses in the Pittsburgh region.
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Many businesses in the Pittsburgh region are still struggling to keep their doors open because of a lack of employees.
Restaurants in the Pittsburgh region are bouncing back from the COVID-19 pandemic closures, but many aren’t getting enough applications for their job openings.
Reporter Greg Piper tweeted “Vaccines are not safe for everyone.”
The post also linked to a report by the higher education news website the College Fix detailing Brigham Young University’s refusal to grant an exception to its vaccine mandate for a student with a potentially complicating medical condition.
Piper’s appended remark is backed up by CDC guidance, which stipulates that “some people should not get certain vaccines or should wait before getting them.”
Piper pointed out to Just the News that “every mandate has a medical exemption.”
Thousands of protesters flocked to the streets throughout France on Saturday, August 7, for the fourth weekend in a row to demonstrate against a new pandemic health permit that is required to access most establishments or use public transportation. The current round of demonstrations comes after France’s highest court upheld the majority of a new law mandating the health pass and the vaccination of healthcare professionals against the coronavirus. According to the court, the stipulations were in line with the nation’s founding charter.
As per a notification issued by the French government on July 29, residents were expected to “present a health pass to access leisure and culture venues and events bringing together more than 50 people.” The health cards will be required to enter pubs, restaurants, and shopping centres starting Monday, as well as for the long-distance travel by plane, rail, or bus.
President Emmanuel Macron has pushed for the pass, which requires confirmation of vaccination, a negative coronavirus test result within the last 48 hours, or proof of recovery from the virus for at least 15 days (but not more than six months).
Macron thinks that the new laws will encourage inhabitants to get vaccinated and prevent the spread of the fast-spreading Delta strain of the coronavirus as France approaches the “fourth wave” of the pandemic. According to polls, the majority of French citizens approve the health passes.
Pittsburgh officials announced that vaccination will be required for any new hires on Friday, a day after Allegheny County leaders announced a similar mandate for new county employees. In addition, any current employees who are not vaccinated will have to wear masks at all times inside city facilities. Officials said
The Canadian government has prohibited Americans from taking nonessential trips there since March 2020 because of the Covid-19 pandemic. But that will change on Monday, August 9, when Canada opens its borders once again to leisure travel from its southern neighbors.In a news release issued July 19, the Public Health Agency of Canada said the loosening of these restrictions is taking place because of “rising vaccination rates and declining Covid-19 cases.”As of August 7, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention placed Canada at “Level 3: High” for Covid-19. Level 4 is the highest warning.
An Ohio congressman on Friday asked his GOP House colleagues to consider filing articles of impeachment against President Biden for an “unconstitutional” order to extend the eviction moratorium and for his “dereliction” of duty in securing the southern border.
Rep. Bob Gibbs, R-Ohio, sent a letter to his fellow Republicans urging them to seek impeachment because Biden “continues to disregard his constitutional duties and boundaries,” he said.
Gibbs cites Biden bowing to progressive pressure this week to extend a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) eviction moratorium even after the president acknowledged it likely won’t pass constitutional muster. The White House previously said its hands were tied by a recent Supreme Court opinion and couldn’t extend the protections for renters unilaterally, but Biden reversed course after outrage from the left.
Washington (CNN)The Biden administration is extending the pause on federal student loan payments one last time until January 31.The pandemic relief benefit was set to expire on September 30 after an unprecedented 19-month suspension. The freeze was initially put in place by Congress and then extended by both the Trump and Biden administrations.“As our nation’s economy continues to recover from a deep hole, this final extension will give students and borrowers the time they need to plan for restart and ensure a smooth pathway back to repayment,” said Education Secretary Miguel Cardona in a statement.Borrower balances have effectively been frozen for more than a year, with no payments required on federal loans since March 2020. During this time, interest has stopped adding up — saving the average borrower about $2,000 over the first year — and collections on defaulted debt have been on hold.
NEW YORK — CNN has fired three employees who violated company policy by coming to work unvaccinated against the COVID-19 virus.
CNN chief Jeff Zucker told staff members of the firing in a memo sent Thursday that reminded them that vaccines were mandatory if they report to the office or out in the field where they come into contact with other employees.
“Let me be clear — we have a zero tolerance policy on this,” wrote Zucker, chairman of news and sports for WarnerMedia.
The memo was obtained by The Associated Press after its contents were first tweeted by CNN media reporter Oliver Darcy. CNN offered no details on the firings, or where the employees were based.
Most of CNN’s offices are already open on a voluntary basis, and Zucker said more than a third of news staff members have returned. Proof of vaccination has been left to the honor system, he said, but that may change in coming weeks.
The CNN leader said that masks will be required in Atlanta, Washington and Los Angeles offices when people aren’t eating, drinking or in an enclosed private space. Even in offices where mask-wearing is not mandated, people should do what feels comfortable to them “without any fear of retaliation or judgment from co-workers,” he said.
The CNN memo also said a planned Sept. 7 company-wide return to the office will be delayed until at least early to mid-October.
SYDNEY, Aug 5 (Reuters) – Sydney reported its worst day of the COVID-19 pandemic on Thursday with five deaths and a record rise in locally acquired infections as a weeks-long hard lockdown is struggling to contain the highly contagious Delta strain of the coronavirus.
Four of the five people that died were unvaccinated while one had one dose, New South Wales state health authorities said, as they implored residents to get inoculated as early as possible.
Authorities also announced a one-week lockdown from Thursday in the region surrounding the state’s second-largest city of Newcastle, 140 km (87 miles) north of Sydney, after six cases were reported there.
That will place an additional 615,000 people under lockdown, raising the total in New South Wales under strict stay-home restrictions to 6 million people out of 8 million in the state, or about a quarter of Australia’s population.
The authorities suspect the outbreak began with a beach party near Newcastle after people travelled from Sydney, an apparent violation of the city’s lockdown.
“Our strongest focus … is getting to the bottom of how the disease was transmitted and introduced into Newcastle,” New South Wales Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant told reporters, as most cases were still being detected in Sydney, the state capital and Australia’s largest city.
There were 259 new COVID-19 cases in Sydney, out of 262 in all of New South Wales, health authorities said, daily records for the city and the state, which reported a previous high of 239 on Sunday.
There have been more than 4,300 cases in New South Wales during the latest surge that began seven weeks ago after the first case of the Delta variant was detected in an unvaccinated, unmasked limousine driver who transported overseas airline crew.
A coalition of 11 housing industry groups said in a statement Wednesday evening that they opposed the new ban.
Trade groups representing property owners late Wednesday sued to block a new federal eviction moratorium that President Joe Biden himself warned this week was on shaky legal ground.
The Alabama and Georgia chapters of the National Association of Realtors filed a motion in federal court to vacate the ban that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ordered Tuesday. The same groups led a legal challenge against the prior federal eviction moratorium that expired Saturday — a lawsuit that prompted the Supreme Court to cast doubt on the CDC’s authority.
President Biden knows that the CDC’s eviction moratorium is illegal, having, per Gene Sperling, “not only kicked the tires,” but “double, triple, quadruple checked.” He also knows that the Supreme Court has ruled that it is illegal, and that the majority of the legal scholars he has consulted think that the Court is correct.
And yet, because a bunch of progressives have spent the day complaining, Biden announced just now that he intends to violate his oath and reissue the order anyway. “The bulk of the constitutional scholars,” Biden admitted at his press conference just now, “say it’s not likely to pass constitutional muster.” Then he said that he was prepared to try his luck anyway.
After intense pressure from progressives, the CDC has announced a more limited eviction moratorium days after an earlier freeze on evictions expired.
Days after a national eviction moratorium expired, the Biden administration on Tuesday issued a new, more limited freeze that remains in effect through Oct. 3.
Like the previous order, the two-month moratorium issued Tuesday comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The new ban on evictions covers parts of the United States that are experiencing what the CDC calls “substantial” and “high” spread of the coronavirus.
As of Tuesday afternoon, that’s the vast majority of U.S. counties.
The order, which cites the rise of the delta variant, says: “Without this Order, evictions in these [higher transmission] areas would likely exacerbate the increase in cases.”
“Where we are right now with such high disease rates, we felt a new, tailored order [was needed] to make sure that … working Americans who were at risk of eviction could be stably housed during this really tenuous, challenging period of time,” the CDC’s director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, told NPR’s All Things Considered.
Rep. Maxine Waters took to Twitter to rage against the failure of her folks on the left to properly push forward the money needed to keep the free market from freely evicting those who won’t pay to stay, and in so doing, unwittingly, revealed all that’s evil about the Democrats.
They can’t — won’t — acknowledge properly placed, constitutionally stamped limits on the power of government.
“I don’t buy that the CDC can’t extend the eviction moratorium — something it has already done in the past! Who is going to stop them? Who is going to penalize them? There is no official ruling,” Waters tweeted, “saying that they cannot extend this moratorium. C’mon CDC — have a heart! Just do it!”
PITTSBURGH —Giant Eagle announced Monday that they would reinstate the wearing of face masks, cloth face coverings or face shields for all customers and staff, inclusive of all vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals.
The company said all Giant Eagle, Market District and GetGo staff will be required to wear a face mask, cloth face covering or face shield starting August 4.The company is strongly requesting that customers comply with the same mask requirement starting August 6. Complimentary masks for any guest who does not have one will be provided.
Giant Eagle curbside pickup and delivery service continues to be available.
The company said the introduction of the Delta variant created a renewed sense of urgency.
Giant Eagle said it is actively reviewing paths forward regarding a potential vaccination requirement for all employees.