As the country prepares to reopen in the coming months, a hot topic is the legality of requiring your staff to have the Covid-19 vaccination in order to return to the workplace. At present, there is no legislation that requires persons to vaccinate specifically for the purpose of returning to the workplace. There are a few exceptions where an employer can require staff members to vaccinate but these are limited to healthcare and possibly childcare environments.
There Is however, a framework you may follow to ensure your staff are safely following the best advice as per public health guidelines. The first step in this is to open the conversation with your staff members about their intention to vaccinate. This allows the employer to assess what percentage of employees intend on getting vaccinated. For employees who are unsure or do not wish to vaccinate, consider implementing procedures that best support the vaccination process. For example:
The vaccination programme is in place to protect all members of society from Covid-19. Although it is the safest and recommended option, it is not a legal requirement for anyone to have this vaccine. Dismissal due to not receiving the vaccination could be deemed as unfair dismissal.