It has come to the community's attention that SSM Health, which operates a hospital in Janesville, has a new COVID-19 vaccination requirement for physicians, providers and volunteers by Sept. 1. This is wrong on so many levels.

Lets us set the profound legal, civil and human rights violations aside for a moment. This mandate is profoundly unfair to our frontline health care heroes. These professionals stood in the face of fear in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic as little was known about this disease. Yet they left their homes and loved ones to don their personal protective equipment against this silent and unknown killer to protect our communities and carry out the mission of their employers, including SSM.

Now, when the pandemic is largely behind us and we know so much more about how to diagnose and treat it, these frontline heroes are now being forced by their employer to take an experimental vaccine which is no longer needed and inadequately tested. This is extremely unfair and will ultimately pose a severe health risk in our community in the form of staffing shortages because many of these employees will simply quit their jobs instead of having their employer force them to take an experimental pharmaceutical.

If our community is truly supportive of our frontline heroes who were there for us in our time of need, we must stand with them now.

 DAN DeFORE

Janesville

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