Business Roundtable, a lobbyist group representing dozens of the largest U.S. businesses, expressed support Thursday for President Biden’s plan to require private-sector companies with more than 100 employees to mandate vaccination or conduct weekly COVID-19 testing.
"Business Roundtable welcomes the Biden Administration’s continued vigilance in the fight against COVID," the group said in a statement. "America’s business leaders know how critical vaccination and testing are in defeating the pandemic, which is why so many have invested resources in encouraging and incentivizing their customers and employees to get vaccinated, including providing paid time off.
"Over the past several weeks many companies have decided to implement a vaccine mandate for some or all of their employees, a decision we applaud," the group added. "Business Roundtable looks forward to continue working with the Administration and leaders across all levels of government to defeat the pandemic."
Biden included the vaccination directive for private sector businesses as part of his six-pronged plan to combat a surge in COVID-19 cases due to the delta variant. The president said the Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will implement a rule requiring companies with 100 or more employees to mandate vaccinations or require weekly COVID-19 testing.
The rule is expected to apply to more than 80 million Americans.
Business Roundtable’s members include the CEOs of dozens of major companies across various industries, including Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy and Apple CEO Tim Cook. Walmart CEO Doug McMillon is the group’s chairman.
Numerous privately held businesses have already implemented vaccine mandates for their staffers. Companies with mandates include major U.S. airlines such as American and Delta, Citigroup, Google and McDonald’s.