The Montana legislature on Tuesday passed a bill prohibiting employers from requiring their employees to receive a coronavirus vaccine as a condition of employment.
The bill bars employers from denying employment opportunities, educational opportunities, privileges, licensing, goods, or services based on vaccination status or whether someone has an immunity passport. Employers are still permitted to strongly recommend that workers get vaccinated.
The bill was amended so it would not affect vaccine requirements at public schools, but individuals can seek religious or medical exemptions to those vaccination requirements.
The bill now gets sent to Republican Governor Greg Gianforte for his signature.
“Up to now Montana employers have respected the fundamental, personal, medical and religious freedoms of Montanans,” GOP state senator Tom McGillvray, who presented the bill, said last week, according to the Associated Press.
“However, that’s not the case anymore,” he said. “There are employers … that are requiring and coercing employees to get vaccinations under threat of termination and intimidation.”
Some health care organizations voiced their opposition to the bill,