Universal workers should be vaccinated or undergo weekly testing

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FILE - Signs about social distancing and other protocols are seen at the theme park as guests pass by Universal Orlando Resort on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, in Orlando, Florida.  Company officials said on Wednesday, Jan.12, 2022 that Universal <a class=Parks‘ themed workers must be fully immunized by Feb.9 or be required to take a test every week. (AP Photo / John Raoux, file)” title=”FILE – Signs about social distancing and other protocols are seen at the theme park as guests pass by Universal Orlando Resort on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, in Orlando, Florida. Company officials said on Wednesday, Jan.12, 2022 that Universal Parks’ themed workers must be fully immunized by Feb.9 or be required to take a test every week. (AP Photo / John Raoux, file)” loading=”lazy”/>

FILE – Signs about social distancing and other protocols are seen at the theme park as guests pass by Universal Orlando Resort on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, in Orlando, Florida. Company officials said on Wednesday, Jan.12, 2022 that Universal Parks’ themed workers must be fully immunized by Feb.9 or be required to take a test every week. (AP Photo / John Raoux, file)

PA

Starting next month, theme park workers at Universal Orlando will need to be vaccinated or undergo weekly COVID-19 tests in order to comply with federal guidelines, company officials said on Wednesday.

A majority of workers are already vaccinated. The new policy does not affect guests.

Under federal regulations that came into effect Monday, businesses with 100 or more employees must require workers to be vaccinated or require unvaccinated employees to undergo weekly COVID tests. The regulations are being challenged in the United States Supreme Court.

Universal theme park workers must be fully immunized by February 9 or be required to take a test every week, Universal officials said in a statement. They said the company will initially provide free on-site testing.

“The health and safety of our guests and members of our team has been our continued goal during the pandemic,” the statement said. “We will also monitor legal actions involving these regulations by a variety of public and private interests and will adapt accordingly if there are any changes.”

Last fall Florida Governor Ron DeSantis enacted a measure prohibiting private companies from having vaccination warrants unless they allow workers to opt out for medical reasons, religious beliefs, immunity based on previous infection, regular testing or agreement to wear protective gear. Federal law takes precedence over Florida law.

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