Yesterday, Governor Scott extended his COVID vaccination mandate for state employees working in correctional facilities, the Vets’ Home, and the Vermont Psychiatric Care Hospital to all state employees.
“We feel it’s the best way to put this pandemic behind us,” Scott said of requiring vaccinations. “I continue to urge other employers to follow suit.”
After learning of the mandate, VSEA Executive Director Steve Howard reminded reporters that many state employees are working in jobs that cause them to come in contact with the general public.
“It’s not just the employees who are in these buildings,” Howard says in a Seven Days story.
Other press about the announcement:
VSEA Executive Director Clarifies That Any Vaccination Requirement Triggers Impact Bargaining
Like a lot of Vermonters, VSEA’s Special Events Committee and Board of Trustees members were cautiously optimistic a few weeks ago that it would be possible to include an in-person option for VSEA members and retirees wanting to attend Council and/or Annual Meeting. But the recent surge in new COVID cases across Vermont caused the Committee and Board this week to cancel the in-person option and instead decide that both meetings would now be virtual-only, via Zoom.
“As your President, your health and well-being in these troubling times are my greatest concern,” explains VSEA President Aimee Towne. “I had really hoped to have a lively and fun in-person Annual Meeting at Jay Peak. Unfortunately, the rising case number for COVID throughout Vermont has caused VSEA to make the difficult decision to go to a completely virtual Annual Meeting on September 11, in order to protect your health and that of the employees of Jay Peak. I know this is disappointing, I hope we will be able to meet in person very soon. I look forward to that day very much.”
If you have already reserved a room at Jay Peak Resort please cancel it at your earliest convenience. You won’t be charged a cancelation fee if you cancel more than 72 hours prior to arrival. Thank you!
Register Online! Once registered, VSEA will send the Zoom link and call-in information prior to the meeting. Don’t have a Zoom account? Sign-up for one here.
Learn More About VSEA Annual Meeting
Several news reports this morning about Gov. Scott’s press conference yesterday, where he said, “We are now also considering expanding this [vaccination] requirement across state government, and we will have those discussions in the near future.” VSEA is cautioning the State that any vaccination requirement will trigger “impact bargaining” with VSEA Bargaining Units.
“The Administration can implement such a policy but they have to bargain the impact with VSEA,” reminds VSEA Executive Director Steve Howard. “Members who feel strongly one way or the other about a requirement and its impact should reach out right away to their Bargaining Team members to discuss their concerns.”
Find VSEA Bargaining Team members
Note: After a vaccination mandate was recently implemented in Washington state, state employees there filed a lawsuit against the State, arguing the Governor failed to negotiate this “working condition” which the union contract mandates.
Governor’s Vaccination Mandate To Extend To All State Employees, Beginning September 15