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Biden touts vaccine requirements in Illinois, urges unvaccinated Americans to get COVID-19 shot

Joe Biden
Posted at 12:04 PM, Oct 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-07 17:01:04-04

President Joe Biden on Thursday addressed the nation, touting his administration's efforts to have employers and industries require workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Biden delivered his remarks from Elk Grove Village, Illinois, a Chicago suburb.

"We know there is no other way to beat the pandemic than to get the vast majority of Americans vaccinated," Biden said.

In September, Biden laid out a six-pronged plan to combat COVID-19 this fall.

Part of that plan included a new rule from the Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) that will require all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workforce is fully vaccinated. That provision also requires workers who remain unvaccinated to produce a negative test result on at least a weekly basis before coming to work.

"In total, this Labor Department vaccination requirement will cover 100 million Americans," Biden said.

Biden has also signed executive orders requiring all federal workers to be vaccinated and all contractors working with the federal government to be vaccinated.

Since his directive was implemented within the military, Biden said vaccinations rates among active-duty members went from 67% to 97%.

Biden asserted that this continues to be a pandemic of the unvaccinated, which is having an effect on the economy.

"Increased vaccination results in as many as 5 million American workers going back to work because they feel safe they can go back to work," Biden stated.

Biden appeared hopeful that cases will continue to come down if more people get vaccinated. He said cases have dropped by 40% over the last month. He added that rates of hospitalizations and deaths have also fallen.

"We're headed in the right direction if we keep our eye on the ball," he said.