ECEC employees gain vaccination priority status in QLD
Early childhood education and care (ECEC) employees in Queensland will become ‘priority targets’ for COVID-19 vaccinations in the wake of the recent outbreak of the Delta strain in the State.
They join school staff, FIFO workers, and those working in freight and distribution on Queensland’s 1B priority list, with Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk saying the Delta strain “moves incredibly quickly, and we need to be just as fast in our response”.
As such the Queensland Chief Health Officer has approved that any individual working in an early learning, primary, secondary or special school is now in the high-risk priority group.
This includes childcare educators, teachers, teacher aides, management and administrative staff, groundskeepers, cleaners, locum staff, regular volunteers and other ancillary school and early learning support staff.
Minister for Education Grace Grace encouraged all education workers to get vaccinated, across state and non-state schools.
“Staff in schools and childcare centres across Queensland are now able to register for a vaccination on the Queensland Health website,” Ms Grace said.
“I would urge any eligible worker who has not yet been vaccinated to jump online and register.”
Ms Grace asked workplaces to be “as flexible as possible” when it comes to assisting staff to access leave to attend vaccination appointments.
Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services Yvette D’Ath said the unpredictability of the Delta strain had ‘changed the game’, noting that the most recent outbreak spread through schools and through school contacts.
“We want to do everything we can to protect staff working in school and in childcare centres. By protecting them, this provides extra protection for our young people.”
Further information about COVID-19 vaccination in Queensland can be found here.