Thursday, September 16, 2021
As we reported on September 9th, leaders and staff from the impacted SEBAC locals met with representatives from the Lamont Administration to discuss the details and bargain the impacts of recent Executive Orders concerning mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations of state employees who do not qualify for medical or religious exemptions. For employees not working in state hospitals or long-term care facilities, that mandate includes the ability to refuse the vaccine as long as the employee submits to weekly COVID testing.
You can review our initial statement that outlines the relevant executive orders in detail HERE and September 9th update HERE. (Note that Executive Order 13B, which is discussed in those outlines, has since been replaced with Executive Order 13F and Executive Order 13D which is also discussed in those outlines has since been replaced with Executive Order 13G). The text to current EOs can also be found HERE for EO-13F and HERE for EO-13G.
Leaders and staff have since heard back from the Administration on some issues but we are still bargaining over key concerns of our membership including access and cost of testing as well as whether or not testing will be on state time. We are prepared to enter into arbitration if necessary, and will fight hard to see that any changes to the policy made in arbitration provide relief retroactive to September 27th.
In the meantime, we have learned that some members have been emailed forms from their agencies already to apply for religious and medical exemption, and while SEBAC has not yet approved of those forms, we wanted to make sure all members were aware of what has been sent out. You can view the Religious Exemption Form HERE and the Medical Exemption Form HERE. The administration has also released an application and procedures which can be used to provide confidential (to HR) proof of vaccine status. It can be found HERE.