Whirlpool offers employees $1,000 to get COVID-19 vaccine
Whirlpool is offering its employees $1,000 to get the COVID-19 vaccine, according to a company spokesperson.
The appliance company is joining a long list of employers that are incentivizing workers to get the shot in efforts to stave off further spread of COVID-19, particularly as the highly transmissible delta variant continues to spread.
"We have strongly encouraged all of our employees to get vaccinated since the doses were made available earlier this year. Several onsite vaccines drives have been hosted at Whirlpool Corporation locations around the world — including our global headquarters and many of our U.S. manufacturing sites," according to a Whirpool statement.
The company said it had recently increased the cash incentive.
FILE - A sign hangs outside of the Whirlpool manufacturing facility.
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"Our employees' health and safety remains our top priority. Throughout this pandemic they have been working tirelessly to serve our consumers, who are depending on our products more than ever to clean, cook and provide proper food and medicine storage in their homes, and we are working to ensure we can deliver," the company added.
Similarly, companies such as Dollar General, Trader Joe’s and Aldi are incentivizing their employees to get their shots amid rising numbers in COVID-19 deaths and cases.
Vanguard, the giant investment firm, announced in August it is also offering its employees a $1,000 bonus.
"Vanguard recognizes vaccines are the best way to stop the spread of this virus and strongly encourages crew to be vaccinated. As such, we are offering a vaccine incentive for crew who provide COVID-19 vaccination proof. The incentive recognizes crew who have taken the time to protect themselves, each other, and our communities by being vaccinated," said a company spokesperson in a statement.
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Meanwhile, the United States is averaging over 1,800 COVID-19 deaths and 170,000 new cases per day, the highest levels respectively since early March and late January. And both figures have been on the rise over the past two weeks.
The country is still well below the terrifying peaks reached in January, when it was averaging about 3,400 deaths and a quarter-million cases per day.
The U.S. is dispensing about 900,000 vaccinations per day, down from a high of 3.4 million a day in mid-April. On Friday, a Food and Drug Administration advisory panel will meet to discuss whether the U.S. should begin giving booster shots of the Pfizer vaccine.
On a positive note, the number of people now in the hospital with COVID-19 appears to be leveling off or even declining at around 90,000, or about where things stood in February.
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Last week, the president ordered all employers with more than 100 workers to require vaccinations or weekly tests, a measure affecting about 80 million Americans. And the roughly 17 million workers at health facilities that receive federal Medicare or Medicaid also will have to be fully vaccinated.
"We read about and hear about and we see the stories of hospitalized people, people on their deathbeds among the unvaccinated over the past few weeks," President Joe Biden said in announcing the rules. "This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated."
The biggest surge over the summer occurred in states that had low vaccination rates, particularly in the South, where many people rely on air conditioning and breathe recirculated air, said Linsey Marr, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Virginia Tech. She said states farther north could see upticks as the onset of cold weather sends people indoors.
Vaccination rates are not as low in some Northern states, but "there’s still a lot of unvaccinated people out there. Delta is going to find them," Marr said.
The Associated Press and FOX Business contributed to this report.