Full vaccination mandated for some workers in New Zealand

Unvaccinated staff in businesses where customers need to show My Vaccine Pass cannot work unless they are fully inoculated against COVID-19.
By: | November 24, 2021

Staff who want to continue working in workplaces deemed higher risk by the government would need to get their first jabs by December 3 when the new traffic light system comes into effect.

They will need to get their second jab by January 17 to be able to continue working.

The rules apply to workplaces such as those in hospitality, events, gatherings, close-contact businesses and gyms. Businesses that do not follow My Vaccine Pass requirements face fines of up to NZ$15,000 (US$10,476).

Vaccination will be required for all staff at businesses that must use My Vaccine Passes to operate or those which have the option of using My Vaccine Passes to operate with fewer restrictions.

Workplace relations and safety minister Michael Wood said that with 91% of New Zealanders having already gotten one dose of the vaccine, such requirements should not be an issue.

Under the traffic light system, the government has also set a new simplified risk-assessment tool for workplaces that provides a clear, legal framework to help businesses make decisions about vaccinations in the workplace.

READ: New Zealand urged to increase minimum wage for essential workers

The tool has four key factors, at least three of which must be met, before it would be reasonable to require vaccination for particular kinds of work. More testing and refinement of the tool would happen over the next few weeks, according to Stuff.