25 Jan 2022

Unvaccinated Christchurch council staff lose jobs

2:08 pm on 25 January 2022

Christchurch City Council has confirmed 13 staff have had their contracts terminated due to their vaccination status.

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Photo: RNZ / Nate McKinnon

The council announced earlier this year it would require its 2600 staff to be fully vaccinated from Monday 10 January.

Chief Executive Dawn Baxendale said those who had their contracts terminated represented less than half a percent of the council's total staff.

The council's vaccination policy came after months of extensive consultation with staff members.

In an earlier statement, Baxendale said the mandate was in line with a recent staff survey, in which 71 percent of staff respondents said they wanted greater protection in the workplace.

"The policy has since been refined based on feedback to an initial survey and two rounds of consultation, assessments of the risk for roles at the council, expert public health advice, and a review of relevant research."

The policy also reflected the risk presented by new highly contagious variants, such as Omicron, she said.

"Our work on this vaccine policy has been very thorough, but it needed to be given its significance in the ever-changing environment we currently face regarding Covid-19."

Baxendale said the policy helped to protect staff, elected members, and residents.

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