As he referred to the alarming rise in Covid-19 cases as the “pandemic of the unvaccinated,” the president also sought to single out major corporations that in recent weeks have instituted their own types of mandates.
“The private sector is stepping up as well,” Biden said in his remarks. “Even Fox has vaccination requirements. I want to thank Walmart, Google, Netflix, Disney, Tyson Foods for their recent actions requiring vaccinations for employees.”
“Look, I know this isn’t easy, but I will have their backs, and the backs of other private public sector leaders if they take such steps.”
Deadline reported on July 19 that Fox Corp. employees in the U.S. who have not been vaccinated would be required to comply with a series of workplace restrictions, including social distancing and mask wearing. Those who have been vaccinated will not face those same requirements if they enter their vaccine status into the company’s employee site Workday. The policy was outlined in a June email to employees.
Although a number of Fox News personalities have encouraged viewers to get the vaccines, some of the network’s primetime hosts, including Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham, have featured a succession of guests and segments skeptical of the shots.
Last week, Netflix announced a vaccine requirement for casts on its projects, while The Walt Disney Co. unveiled a policy in which all salaried and non-union hourly employees in the U.S. would be required to be fully vaccinated.
In his remarks, Biden warned that the rise in Covid cases is a “largely preventable tragedy that will get worse before it gets better.”
“It’s moving like wildfire through the unvaccinated community and it’s heartbreaking,” he said.
But he also pointed to more encouraging recent signs that vaccination rates are again rising. “The message is getting through, apparently,” he said.