White House mandates COVID-19 vaccines for federal employees in efforts to slow the spread of the Delta Variant

Aug. 2, 2021

Six months into the Biden Administration’s vaccination effort, 164 million Americans are fully vaccinated, including 80 percent of seniors and more than 60 percent of adults, however we are now faced with a much more transmissible strain of this virus—the Delta variant. We know how to stop it: get more people vaccinated.

The President announced additional efforts to do just that—imposing requirements to protect our federal workforce and those they serve, offering additional incentives for vaccination and making it even easier for people, especially young people, to get themselves and their loved ones vaccinated.

The President will announce that to help protect workers and their communities, every federal government employee and onsite contractor will be asked to attest to their vaccination status. Anyone who does not attest to being fully vaccinated will be required to wear a mask on the job no matter their geographic location, physically distance from all other employees and visitors, comply with a weekly or twice weekly screening testing requirement, and be subject to restrictions on official travel.

The federal government employs more than 4 million Americans, including over 2 million in the federal civilian workforce, throughout our country and across the world.

These rules should not only apply to federal workers and onsite contractors. President Biden is directing his team to take steps to apply similar standards to all federal contractors. The Administration will encourage employers across the private sector to follow this strong model.

The President will announce that he is directing the Department of Defense to look into how and when they will add COVID-19 vaccination to the list of required vaccinations for members of the military. This is particularly important because our troops serve in places throughout the world—many where vaccination rates are low and disease is prevalent.

Earlier this week, like many healthcare employers across the country, the Department of Veterans Affairs took the common-sense and important step of requiring their healthcare providers and personnel to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Whitehouse press briefing

More on COVID