Employers should not dismiss unvaccinated employees

Employers should not dismiss unvaccinated employees

  • Date: Thursday 26th August 2021
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The question of mandating Covid-19 vaccinations continues to vex employers and we want to take this opportunity to explore the current situation and consider the measures that can be taken when members of the workforce choose not to receive the jab.

Employers should avoid taking any form of disciplinary action against employees who decline the vaccination but continue to attend work. Should formal action be taken by an employer they will leave themselves open to discrimination claims on the basis of philosophical belief or disability.

For employers with unvaccinated employees, a more pragmatic approach will be to:

  • Revisit latest government advice relating to their sector
  • Review risk assessments to identify any new actions
  • Implement any new required actions

The result may be the need to reinforce previous measures such as the wearing of PPE, face masks, hand hygiene and maintaining social distancing.

Taking a positive and enforced action, employees will also reassure vaccinated employees who are concerned about working with unvaccinated colleagues.

Remember, any measures and procedures that an employer implements or maintains should apply to all employees (unless there are exceptions such as those related to health or disability) and not just to those that are unvaccinated in order to avoid discrimination claims.

Source: Gavin Parrott

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