A slim majority of Michiganders do not support vaccine mandates for employers or clients, although most of those interviewed support mandates for masks and vaccines for children, according to a survey commissioned by the Detroit Regional Chamber.
But opinions vary considerably between political parties.
For example, 51.9% of those polled oppose a vaccine requirement for company employees or customers, while 44% expressed support. But 74.6% of those who consider themselves “strong Democrats” support such mandates, while only 18.8% of “strong Republicans” support them.
Independents largely side with the Republicans here, with just 32.8% supporting such vaccine mandates and 62.4% opposing them.
“Polls show the past 18 months have exacerbated divisions,” Sandy K. Baruah, president and CEO of the Detroit Regional Chamber, said in a press release. “Finding consensus on the best way to control COVID-19 and move Michigan forward has become even more difficult. “
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The survey of 600 people has a margin of error of +/- 4%. This was done between August 30 and September 3, just before President Joe Biden announced his vaccine order for employees of all companies with 100 or more workers.
The Detroit Regional Chamber opposes Biden’s rule.
“Vaccines remain the most effective way out of the pandemic; However, companies must reach a consensus with their staff before implementing mandates, ”the chamber said in the statement. “Sentiment over immunization mandates is very divisive, and in the midst of a labor shortage, mandates could further exacerbate human resource challenges.”
But the group also opposes a Michigan Republican bill that would ban any employer from forcing their own workers to get vaccinated because it would prevent companies from making the decisions that are best for them.
The Michiganders are divided over the Republican bill – with 47.9% in favor and 46.8% against, according to the survey.
Here are other survey results:
- 51.8% said vaccinations should be an individual’s choice, while 40.2% said they were angry that people are prolonging the pandemic by refusing the vaccine. 6.5% said they did not believe in the vaccine and said we should ‘let nature take its course’.
- 55.1% said children should be required to receive the COVID-19 vaccine once it is approved for children by the Food and Drug Administration – just as vaccines are needed for polio, rubella, measles and chickenpox. 38.2% oppose such a mandate.
- Regarding a mandate for children, respondents without children supported the idea, 65% to 28%, while more parents with children opposed, 55.7% to 38.1%.
- 57.3% support the requirements for masks in buildings until the delta variant disappears – including 42.5% of people who “strongly support” the idea.
- Of those who are not vaccinated but say they are “likely” to get the vaccine, 62.5% said final FDA approval would motivate them to get the vaccine. The second highest factor was whether their employer needed the vaccine, with 47.5% saying they would be more likely to get the vaccine in this scenario. The FDA granted full approval for the Pfizer vaccine in August.
The Michigan Small Business Association conducted a separate survey of 680 small businesses between September 10 and September 17. Biden announced his vaccination mandate on September 9.
Vaccination mandates are particularly unpopular among business owners, according to the SBAM survey. About 58% of small business owners surveyed oppose Biden’s mandate, while 29% support him.
While the tenure would primarily impact large companies, there are plenty of “small businesses” with over 100 employees – which is the limit of Biden’s order.
“It’s no surprise that most business owners oppose the vaccine mandate, especially given the shortage of workers,” Brian Calley, president of SBAM, said in a statement. “This federal overreach threatens to exacerbate a difficult staffing situation.”
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