Sep 28, 2021

Vaccine Mandate Update with Exemption Guidance

During the five weeks NAGE has been negotiating with the Commonwealth over the Governor’s announced mandatory vaccination policy, we have repeatedly pressed the state negotiators for information about the standards applied in judging requests for exemptions on medical and religious grounds. The Commonwealth has been unable to give us any clear guidance regarding the criteria that will be used. Instead, they have stated that exemptions will be decided on the basis of the law and the Governor’s Executive Order.
 
In light of the fact that the Baker administration seems determined to unilaterally begin disciplining unvaccinated employees on October 17th, regardless of the status of our negotiations, we want to advise any employees who are determined not to be vaccinated that securing a medical or religious exemption will likely be the last chance you will have to avoid being disciplined and, ultimately, terminated. While we are determined to forcefully represent any such employees in the grievance/arbitration process and likely Charges of Prohibited Practice, you need to know that that litigation will take place considerably after discipline and discharge are imposed. Please see guidance on Vaccine Compliance from HRD HERE
 
In the absence of clear guidance from the Commonwealth, we urge any of you who are determined not to be vaccinated to apply now for exemptions if you have any credible argument to make that you qualify for either or both. It goes without saying that while you should make the most robust case you can for an exemption, you must be completely truthful in anything you say or write. The fact that your reasons may not fit the traditional mold should not deter you from applying.   
 
Please note that the deadline for applying for an exemption is October 8th.
 
We will update you as events unfold.

Please see our previous vaccine mandate updates below:

Sept 24 - Update on Baker Vaccine Mandate 
Sept 9 - Vaccine Mandate Update
Sept 2- - Vaccine Mandate Questions Answered
Aug 20 - NAGE Files Demand to Bargain 

 

We can either have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few; but we can't have both. - Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis
NAGE HEADQUARTERS 159 Burgin Parkway
Quincy, MA 02169
Main Phone: (617)376-0220
Main Fax: (617)984-5695
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