Those who reject vaccine mandates also reject regular COVID-19 testing

August 24, 2021, 3:30 PM UTC

Many Americans accept mandatory vaccines for certain types of employees, according to the latest Economist/YouGov poll. But those who do not support vaccine mandates also reject weekly testing of unvaccinated health care workers, police officers, teachers, and other groups.

Medical providers (65%), teachers (61%), police officers (60%), and members of the U.S. military (59%) are at the top of the public’s list for a vaccine mandate. Most Americans also support requiring federal employees (56%) and college students (55%) to get vaccinated. About half (51%) support efforts to make K-12 students get the shot at this point. 

In many cases, workplaces that mandate the vaccine will allow their employee to opt out if they agree to get tested for the coronavirus weekly. Three in four of those who favor at least one vaccine mandate (73%) accept mandatory testing of the unvaccinated in at least some cases. Democrats and Republicans who believe at least one group should be required to get vaccinated (87% and 52% respectively) also support weekly testing for those who choose not to get the shot. 

Just 4% of the total population rejects vaccine mandates but accepts regular testing for those who won’t be vaccinated, leaving more than one in four Americans (26%) unwilling to support either vaccine mandates or required testing. Republicans are much more likely than Democrats to reject both vaccine mandates and testing: 44% of Republicans reject both compared with just 5% of Democrats. 

Related: Americans support vaccine mandates for teachers, airline workers, and police officers 

See the toplines and crosstabs from this Economist/YouGov poll 

Methodology: The Economist survey was conducted by YouGov using a nationally representative sample of 1,500 US Adult Citizens interviewed online between August 14 - 17, 2021. This sample was weighted according to gender, age, race, and education based on the American Community Survey, conducted by the US Bureau of the Census, as well as 2016 Presidential vote, registration status, geographic region, and news interest. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all US citizens. The margin of error is approximately 2.8% for the overall sample.  

Image: Getty