23rd November 2021 By Staff Reporter | firstname.lastname@example.org | @foodtickernz
Employers will soon be able to use a tool from the government to assess whether they need to have their staff vaccinated.
Workplace relations and safety minister Michael Wood said today that the simplified vaccination assessment tool would be available mid-December.
“We’ve developed a tool to help clarify what work should be covered by vaccinated workers which is simple and clear for assessing when it is reasonable to require vaccination for other work,” Wood said.
“This tool provides a clear, legal framework to help businesses make decisions about vaccinations in the workplace. It builds on the guidance provided by WorkSafe and has had input from BusinessNZ and the Council of Trade Unions.
“The tool will specify four key factors, at least three of which must be met before it would be reasonable to require vaccination for particular work.”
The four criteria are:
Wood said the new process would not override risk assessments that businesses have already conducted under the existing health and safety guidelines.
“Legislation allowing the vaccination assessment tool to be created, as well as introducing four weeks’ paid notice of termination and paid time off to get vaccinated, will be passed under urgency this week,” Wood said.
“This legislation will come into effect the day after it is passed. The assessment tool will then be available for businesses to use once regulations are made in mid-December under the amended law.”
Wood added that workers covered by the My Vaccine Pass mandate needed to be full vaccinated by mid-January.
“This requirement to be vaccinated applies to hospitality, events, gatherings, close contact businesses and gyms,” he said.
“To continue doing work in these areas, workers will need to have their first vaccination by the day that the Covid-19 Protection Framework comes into effect, which will be Friday December 3. These workers will need to be fully vaccinated by 17 January 2022 to continue doing that work.”
More information on the traffic light Covid-19 Protection Framework can be found here.
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