(Austin, TEXAS) – Today, Gov. Greg Abbott released an executive order to maintain his existing prohibition on state government entities requiring the COVID-19 vaccine, despite the Food and Drug Administration finally granting the vaccine approval.
He also announced he’d be adding the issue of whether state or local government entities can mandate an individual receive a COVID-19 vaccine to the special session agenda.
Rep. Donna Howard (D-Austin), a former critical care nurse, issued the following statement in response:
“Today, over 13,000 Texans are hospitalized with COVID-19 — nearly matching our previous peak — and our governor’s response is to double-down on his prohibition of vaccine requirements.
“His original executive order on COVID-19 vaccines listed the fact that they were not yet FDA-approved as a part of the justification for refusing to require them. Now, the Pfizer vaccine is FDA-approved, and he’s moving the goalposts.
“Deaths are on the rise. Our vaccination rate is plateauing. We are second only to Florida in highest case averages. And, again and again, Gov. Abbott squanders every opportunity to protect the health and safety of Texans.”