Tucson may require vaccinations for city employees starting August 24th

TUCSON, Arizona (KOLD News 13) – Tucson City Council is holding a special session on Friday, August 13 at 5:00 p.m.

The only item on the agenda – discussion and vote on a regulation requiring vaccination of employees as a “condition for continued employment”.

The meeting will be streamed at https://www.youtube.com/user/CityofTucson. Bud Foster from KOLD will report on the meeting and report on the results. You can see Bud live at www.kold.com/live.

According to the city, around 1,000 of its 4,500 employees are unvaccinated.

Tucson City Manager Michael Ortega has recommended the council and Mayor Regina Romero to approve the ordinance.

Several large government agencies – US federal agencies, New York, and California – have announced that at least some employees will need to be vaccinated. Big private companies – like Google, Facebook, and the NFL – have done the same thing.

Banner Health and TMC HealthCare, two of the largest healthcare employers in Arizona, recently announced that they would also need the vaccine.

If passed, Tucson employees have until Tuesday, August 24th, to receive at least one dose of the approved vaccines. If an employee fails to do so or is not given a waiver, they could be suspended for eight days without pay.

Employees who refuse to be vaccinated could also face “mandatory tests, restrictions on authorization for certain tasks, increased mask requirements and more”.

However, there is a caveat in the regulation.

If at least half of the 1,000 unvaccinated employees received their vaccination by Friday, August 20, the policy would not go into effect.

The ordinance would also allow the city to offer incentives such as extra time off for those who get vaccinated.

According to Ortega, the city has the right to request the vaccine.

“The City of Tucson, as an employer, may lawfully compel its employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and / or to have regular tests for COVID-19 infection, subject to statutory exceptions and / or medical precautions Prerequisites Conditions / disabilities and sincere religious beliefs, ”he wrote in a letter to the council and the mayor. “The proposed guidelines and requirements take these legal requirements into account. The public prosecutor’s office has reviewed and approved all elements of the guidelines

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