Many small business owners in the Grand Rapids area are struggling to decide whether or not to impose vaccination on their employees. As there are many ramifications on both positions due to the current political climate, many small business owners have found themselves in a bind. Many small businesses have only a handful of employees, so the dissatisfaction of a few could be detrimental to the morale or staffing of the business.
“Obviously you want to do what you can to keep your employees safe, but if I were to impose a vaccine I could easily lose 2-3 employees,” said Andrew Smith, small business owner. “Now if I ran a big business I could lose ten times as much and it wouldn’t matter, but 2-3 people for me is more than half of my staff, which makes you wonder if that really worth it. “
To facilitate this deliberation, a workshop discussing the medical, legal and ethical implications of a small business requirement for a vaccine will be held on October 8 at the Seidman College of Business at Grand Valley State University. Participants will meet virtually on ZOOM from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
During the event, participants will have the opportunity to hear from three experts in their respective fields. First they will hear Dr Alejandro Quiroga. Quiroga is a highly regarded pediatric nephrologist, as well as the Senior Vice President of Population Health at Spectrum Health.
Second, Erik Daly will follow up from a legal perspective on the matter. Daly is a member of the business section at Miller and Johnson and has practiced corporate law since 2007.
Finally, participants will hear from the event curator, Michael DeWilde. As a professor of management at GVSU and director of the Koeze Business Ethics Initiative, DeWilde plans to share the ethical implications when it comes to corporate vaccine mandates.
“(Speaking with) a lot of small business owners, who haven’t really come out on one side or the other as to whether they should apply a mandate in their business,” DeWilde said. “It will be an attempt to talk to people who really don’t know what to do and hopefully give them credible information to help them make a decision.”
DeWilde said speakers at this event do not represent GVSU’s institutional views, as their decision on whether or not to make a vaccine mandatory has already been made. Comments made by presenters strictly represent comments on the mandates of vaccines relative to their respective fields of study, in the hope of helping business owners make the right decisions for their businesses.
Finally, DeWilde said that students and business owners are also invited to pose their questions about immunization mandates to the panel for discussion. During the meeting, a designated person will monitor the chat for questions to ensure that they are handled appropriately by the presenters.
DeWilde asks potential attendees to confirm their attendance through the Richard M. and Helen DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation website. However, participants are still allowed to join the meeting without prior communication with the hosts.
For more information on this event, please visit, https://www.gvsu.edu/cei/module-events-index.htm?siteModuleId=F6AB35CD-CA08-D673-8351AA441A225B12