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Local business owner discusses challenges in fighting vaccine mandate

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GONZALES - It was business as usual Tuesday at Ralph's Market.

But Brandon Trosclair, who employs about 500 people at groceries in Louisiana and Mississippi, worries that could change with the federal vaccine mandate.

"The burden on our business, the potential loss of a lot of employees and also the potential financial burden on our staff as well, Trosclair explained.

He said that's why he filed a lawsuit trying to stop what he calls "a massive overreach of the government."

OSHA wants businesses with more than 100 employees to have them vaccinated or tested regularly. On Saturday, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans issued a stay, meaning the mandate is on hold for now.

The Biden Administration responded Monday, asking the court to lift the pause, saying it was premature and could ultimately cost lives.

Trosclair says his employees are supportive of his efforts.

"For whatever reason, it's a personal choice whether they want to take this vaccine or not. And again, I'm not anti-vaccine, I'm anti-mandate," Trosclair said. "But several have voiced their concerns on how they're going to provide for their family. You know, if they have to lose their job here, it's going to be very, very hard for them to try and find something anywhere else and make a good quality salary to provide for their family."

Harbison says if the Fifth Circuit grants the request for a permanent injunction, the mandate could be halted across the country. If the court rules against that, then the plan is to appeal directly to the United States Supreme Court.

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