*ESPN broadcaster Sage Steele believes President Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for companies with over 100 employees is “sick.”
“Well, I got my shot today,” Steele told former NFL quarterback Jay Cutler on his “Uncut With Jay Cutler” podcast on Wednesday.
“I just — I didn’t want to do it,” she said. “But I work for a company that mandates it, and I have until Sept. 30 to get it done, or I’m out.”
Per NBC News, the Walt Disney Co., which co-owns ESPN, announced in July that all salaried and non-union hourly employees must be vaccinated within 60 days.
“I respect everyone’s decision. I really do. But to mandate it is sick,” Steele said. “It’s one thing with masks, and I don’t have a problem with that. It’s another thing when you force this.”
“It’s scary to me in many ways, but I have a job that I love and frankly a job that I need,” she said of decision to get the vaccine before the deadline. “I’m not surprised that it got to this point especially with Disney, I mean a global company like that.”
Steele noted that she had an “emotional” experience while getting the shot.
“I think the mandate is what I really have an issue with,” Steele said. “I do know, for me personally, I feel — I feel like defeated.”
We previously reported on a new survey that indicates most firms are planning on having COVID-19 vaccine mandates for their workforce.
Nearly 1,000 U.S. employers, employing almost 10 million workers, are requiring workers to get the shot, according to data released by Wednesday by Willis Towers Watson, a multinational advisory and insurance firm. That number of employers is expected to spike over the next several months.
More than half of employers surveyed between August 18 and 25 say that by the fourth quarter of 2021, they could have one or more vaccine mandate requirements in the workplace. This ranges from requiring vaccinations for employees to access common areas (such as cafeterias) to requiring the shot for specific employees to requiring it for all employees.