Rep. Niemerg Supports State Workers’ “Religious Exemption” to Governor/CMS Vaccine Mandate

State Representative Adam Niemerg (R-Teutopolis) supports the rights of State of Illinois workers who have filed for a “religious exemption” to the Covid-19 Vaccination mandate. Letters to both the Acting Director and the Deputy Director for Labor Relations of the Central Management Service (CMS) Division ask that they reconsider disciplinary action and possible termination for workers who have chosen not to take the Covid-19 vaccine.

“I feel that the Governor’s staff at CMS are improperly rejecting the religious exemption request by state employees who are asking for the government to respect their decision not to take the Covid-19 Vaccine,” explained Rep. Adam Niemerg. “When our state workers are willing to show up and help with public safety and other kinds of jobs, but do not want to take a particular vaccine for religious reasons and based on their right of conscience, those requests should be honored.”

When Rep. Niemerg requested the metrics, data, and statutes for the rejection of religious requests in light of the President declaring the Covid-19 pandemic over, the (CDC) revised recommendations on testing and masking, and the Governor’s removal of all mandates for health care facilities; CMS responded with the following:

“There are no metrics for acceptance or denials of a religious exemption request. Instead,

each request was reviewed individually to determine whether or not that request

outweighed the State’s significant interest in keeping its employees and those in its care

safe and protected from the virus.” And that “These policies are not based on statute.”

“The fact that religious exemption requests are arbitrarily denied or approved based on no metrics other than the State’s interest is frightening and a complete abuse of government,” added Rep Niemerg. “This must stop now!”