"We're headed in the right direction. We have critical work to do, but we can't let up now," the president said in televised remarks, noting that both national cases and hospitalizations are down 47% and 38%, respectively, over the past six weeks. "I'm calling on more businesses to step up. I'm calling on more parents to get their children vaccinated when they are eligible. I'm asking everyone — everyone who hasn't gotten a vaccine, please get vaccinated, till we put this pandemic behind us and accelerate our economic recovery."
Earlier in his public announcement, Biden mentioned "mounting data" suggesting that businesses that implement vaccine requirements for employees "are seeing their vaccination rates rise by an average of 20% or more to well over 90%."
"Vaccination requirements should not be another issue that divides us," he continued. "That's why we continue to battle the misinformation that's out there, and companies and communities are stepping up as well to combat this misinformation."
Biden also confirmed reports that the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will make a determination on vaccinating children between the ages of 5 and 11 in the near future.
"We have purchased enough vaccines for all children between the ages of 5 and 11," the president said. "It'll be convenient for parents to get their children vaccinated at trusted locations, and families will be able to sleep easier at night knowing their kids are protected as well."
Last month, the president announced businesses with over 100 employees will be forced to mandate coronavirus vaccines or administer weekly tests. Employers are also required to pay employees for time off to get vaccinated and recover from side effects, something that ultimately hurts small businesses.
"The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been working expeditiously to develop an emergency temporary standard that covers employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workers are fully vaccinated or undergo weekly testing to protect employees from the spread of coronavirus in the workplace," a Department of Labor spokesperson said in a statement.
"On Tuesday, October 12, as part of the regulatory review process, the agency submitted the initial text of the emergency temporary standard to the Office of Management and Budget."