Bradley attorney Stephanie Gaston was interviewed by Fox 26 Houston after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott expanded the ban on vaccine mandates.
The order is limited to government agencies and companies that are funded by taxpayer money. Asked if non-government agencies can still ask you to get vaccinated, Gaston replied, “This latest executive order does not prohibit private companies from requiring their employees to get a COVID-19 vaccine.”
Many parents wonder why the same requirements for the COVID-19 vaccine do not relate to other vaccines required for kids to go back to school.
“That’s Governor Abbott’s point,” Gaston said. “Historically, immunization requirements and any exceptions to those requirements come out of our state legislature. This executive order issued by Governor Abbott essentially maintains the status quo until the state legislature can address COVID-19 vaccinations.”
Regarding restaurants and bars, customers in Texas may not be asked to provide vaccination status.
“Private companies, local bars that are privately owned can ask or require their employees to be vaccinated, but typically you won’t see them ask a customer to present a vaccine passport or proof of a vaccine,” Gaston said. “They’re not prohibited from doing that, but they have been strongly discouraged from doing so under these executive orders.”
Lawmakers will decide if this is left up to the state and local government to issue mandates.
“The state legislature could take this up when they are in session next. It’s also possible that this executive order could be challenged through our legal system in our courts,” said Gaston.
The original interview aired on Fox 26 Houston on August 27, 2021.