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Mid-Michigan companies relieved over U.S. Supreme Court ruling

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Nation's top trade groups hail SCOTUS ruling after filing emergency appeals against Biden's vaccine mandate

The nation's largest industry trade groups are calling the US Supreme Court's decision to block US President Joe Biden's vaccine or testing requirement for businesses a victory for employers.

OWOSSO, Mich. (WJRT) – Some Michigan companies are remaining silent but vigilant after the U.S. Supreme Court stopped the Biden administration from enforcing a requirement for employees at large businesses to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or undergo weekly testing and wear a mask on the job.

Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership CEO Justin Horvath works with many large companies and said the court's ruling comes as a relief for many business leaders.

“The worry is with a mandate in place these businesses would lose a significant amount of their labor force,” Horvath said. “In a time when they're struggling with the talent pool as it is, it could have really devastating effects.”

Josh's Frogs in Owosso was prepared for the repercussions of the mandate.

“We were really dreading the implementation of this vaccine, weekly testing and all the little quirks that we'd have to work through,” owner Joshua Willard said.

Even without a required vaccination policy, safety is still a priority. If company leaders want to implement a mandate, employment lawyers say they can.

“The employer has the flexibility ultimately to make the decision,” attorney Dean Yeotis said. “But as with most major decisions in the workplace, I think it's important to listen to the employees and try to get an idea where they're coming from and what their, what they're thinking about the situation.”

That's exactly why Willard decided to keep employee vaccination optional.

“We just didn't feel like that was appropriate to do to our employees and so what we've done instead is really encourage our employees to get vaccinations,” Willard said.