Aug 12, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Supreme Court denies challenge to Indiana University vaccine mandate

People protesting  Indiana University's coronavirus vaccination mandate in Bloomington in June 2021.
People protest Indiana University's coronavirus vaccination mandate in Bloomington in June 2021. Photo: Jeremy Hogan/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Justice Amy Coney Barrett denied an emergency petition filed by lawyers representing eight Indiana University students that called on the Supreme Court to block the university's coronavirus vaccine mandate, according to NBC News.

Why it matters: Barrett's denial, which was made without any dissent from other justices, upholds lower court rulings that deemed that the school had a right to mandate vaccinations.

  • It may also dent separate challenges to other university coronavirus vaccine mandates that are pending in federal courts.

The big picture: Indiana University mandated that students must be vaccinated unless they qualify for an exemption due to related medical issues or religious objections.

  • If they obtained an exemption, the students are required to wear masks and get tested twice a week.
  • Public and private entities are increasingly mandating vaccines in response to a new wave of coronavirus cases driven by the Delta variant of the virus, including at least 720 colleges or universities, according to a tally kept by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Go deeper: President of second largest teachers union is open to vaccine mandate

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