Due to a company vaccine mandate, Nike will begin laying off unvaccinated employees starting January 15, 2022
According to a report by The Oregonian, the Nike will begin laying off unvaccinated employees this weekend in the US. The company has a vaccine mandate in place since October. Those who have not received any form of medical or religious exemption will be fired on Saturday, January 15th. The company’s approach to the vaccine mandate may encounter some resistance from employees and the legal field, but many legal experts believe that private employers can adopt government mandates independently of the court ruling.
While the company is set to lay off unvaccinated employees next weekend, the Nike sent a warning email to these unvaccinated employees. “You have not completed the verification process and our records show that you do not have an approved exemption. As a result, you are not in compliance with the policy and your employment is scheduled to terminate on Saturday, January 15, 2022,” reads an email sent to an employee last week.
Originally, to Nike had hoped to have employees back in the office on January 10 on a hybrid schedule, but due to the rise in COVID-19 cases, those plans fell through. “We believe that over time, with innovation and a strong brand, we want to go to a hybrid model,” said the company’s CEO, John Donahoe, in a call last month.
“As you know, in the United States, we have mandatory vaccines and we have a very high response rate to that. Therefore, we are ready to return to a hybrid work environment when it is safe to do so,” he continued. Based on the Oregonian’s report, about 120 Nike employees objected to the orders, but it’s unclear how many of those employees are vaccinated.