The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Supreme Court to Workers:
Die if Your Bosses Need You To

Jan 17, 2022

The Supreme Court last week overturned the Biden administration’s requirement that all employers with over 100 employees require vaccination of all their workers.

In doing so, the Court’s conservative majority stated that OSHA had overstepped its bounds: because COVID can spread anywhere, not just the workplace, "permitting OSHA to regulate the hazards of daily life … would significantly expand OSHA’s regulatory authority without clear congressional authorization."

Apparently, the Supreme Court is now saying that OSHA has no authority to regulate any dangers that also exist outside the workplace. Cancer dangers, of course, can be anywhere. But up until now, OSHA has had the authority to regulate workers’ exposure to cancer-causing chemicals. No more? The Supreme Court just gave a blank check to employers on all sorts of workplace dangers.

Of course, though, the Biden administration had not at all forced companies to do anything—except to require something of their workers. Companies were told to require their workers to get vaccinated. NOT to provide full vaccination to their workers, NOT to give workers time off from their jobs to get vaccinated, NOT to give their workers time off if they got sick from the vaccine. Not to mention being required to provide proper ventilation and social distancing and N95 masks for every worker. The full burden of responsibility has been put onto workers, NOT the companies!

Biden’s OSHA has demanded nothing of the companies themselves. Congress has required nothing of the companies either. And now the Supreme Court has put a block on OSHA’s ability to require anything.

Whether the Executive branch, or the Legislative, or the Judicial, workers can expect no help or protection from the bosses’ government. Our only protection can come from ourselves.