· Waving signs like “coercion is not consent,” and “stop the mandate,” some 200 Boeing Co employees and others staged a protest on Friday over the planemaker’s COVID-19 vaccine requirement for U.S. workers. Boeing said on Tuesday it will require its 125,000 U.S. employees to be vaccinated by Dec. 8 under an executive order issued by President Joe Biden for federal contractors. Many of the protestors say that they can keep themselves safe and believe the mandate is a violation of their rights. Major U.S. airlines including American Airlines have said they will also meet the deadline imposed on federal contractors, as has aircraft parts manufacturer Spirit AeroSystems. Boeing’s mandate will not be immediately imposed in Texas where Republican Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order on Monday barring COVID-19 vaccine mandates by any entity, including private employers.
· Facebook will expand its current harassment policies to further protect users from abuse and harmful content on the platform. On Wednesday, the company announced it would ban content that degrades or sexualizes public figures, such as elected officials, celebrities, activists, and journalists. The new policy also mandates the removal of coordinated mass intimidation and harassment that come from multiple users to protect government dissidents. State-linked and state-sponsored organizations using private groups to coordinate mass posting on profiles of government critics will also be removed as well. These changes were made in response to the use of Facebook’s platform to incite violence overseas and looming doubts in their algorithm’s ability to pick up on misinformation.
· Texas bill restricting transgender student athletes’ sports participation sent back to the House with an amendment to be approved. In the final days of this year’s third special session, Texas lawmakers advanced a bill that would restrict transgender student-athletes from playing on school sports teams that align with their gender identity. Named House Bill 25 (HB25), students would only be permitted to compete on sports teams that correspond to the gender listed on their birth certificate that was assigned at or near the time of birth. Also, HB 25 would disallow the acceptance of modified birth certificates by requiring a student’s gender to be determined by their original birth certificate unless their original certificate contained a clerical error. The House must approve an amendment added by the Senate before it can go to the governor’s desk to be approved.