Union shares concerns about vaccine roll out for NSW ECEC educators
The United Workers Union (UWU) has expressed concern about the vaccination roll out in New South Wales after early childhood education and care (ECEC) professionals were given approximately ten days to arrange a vaccination against COVID-19 before the August 30 deadlines.
Vaccination related rules for educators who live or work in places designated as “areas of concern” in NSW outline that educators must not enter or remain at work unless they have had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine or have been issued with a medical contraindication certificate, and that all educators when entering their workplace must carry evidence of their vaccination or contraindication certificate and be ready to produce it when requested by their employer, police or authorised officer.
The rules will come into force on 30 August 2021, after which educators, and their employers, will be expected to comply.
“The vast majority of workers we represent want to get vaccinated, but many have been unable to do so,” UWU National Secretary Tim Kennedy said.
He described the vaccine roll-out as something which has been “bungled from the get-go,” not just through the lack of availability and access, “but through confusing and mixed messaging from both the Federal and State governments.”
“We have had people calling the union distressed, worried about their job. They tell us that they have tried to book a dose but cannot secure an appointment until after the Monday 30 August deadline,” Mr Kennedy explained.
“The workers affected are employed in essential industries and have turned up to work at the risk of infecting themselves and their families, with little-to-no support from their employer and minimal support from the Government charged with protecting them,” he added.
The Union is concerned that decisions are being made without a realistic understanding of the practical implications of those decisions.
For more information about the vaccination requirements please see here.