Davenport, IOWA – According to the state officials, this bill was made public minutes before lawmakers were to begin a special session that was convened to address redistricting.
Officials say that the new bill requires businesses to allow medical and religious exemptions for COVID-19 vaccine mandates and guarantees that employees who are fired for deciding not to get vaccinated for COVID-19 are eligible for unemployment insurance.
The Iowa House and Senate approved the measure Thursday.
Reynolds signed into law in May a measure that prevents state and local governments from requiring an individual to prove vaccination status using so-called vaccine passports.
Governor Kim Reynolds released the following statement:
“I am proud to sign this bipartisan piece of legislation today. This is a major step forward in protecting Iowans’ freedoms and their abilities to make healthcare decisions based on what’s best for themselves and their families.
This legislation also gives employees the assurance that they will still receive unemployment benefits despite being fired for standing up for their beliefs.
As I’ve stated publicly numerous times, I believe the vaccine is the best defense against COVID-19 and we’ve provided Iowans with the information they need to determine what’s best for themselves and their families, but no Iowan should be forced to lose their job or livelihood over the COVID-19 vaccine.”