Employers

Can an employer make vaccination for Covid-19 mandatory for its employees?

Whether or not an employer can make it mandatory for its employees to get vaccinated will depend on the circumstances of the employment. An employer cannot mandate vaccination simply because they want to or they think it is the "right thing to do". They must have a lawful and reasonable basis for doing so.

Whether or not an employer can make it mandatory for its employees to get vaccinated will depend on the circumstances of the employment. An employer cannot mandate vaccination simply because they want to or they think it is the “right thing to do”. They must have a lawful and reasonable basis for doing so.

An example of a lawful and reasonable basis would be if the employer was in an industry in which the Government (Federal or State) had legislated that workers in that industry must be vaccinated (eg Aged Care). In those circumstances the employer has no choice but to mandate vaccination and if an employee refused to be vaccinated then they could be dismissed as they could not carry out the inherent requirements of their employment.

Another example would be if the employer provided services to vulnerable persons who would be at risk if it’s employees were not vaccinated (eg home care services).

 

If the decision to mandate vaccination by an employer is reasonable based on its operational requirements then it will be lawful. It will also most likely override any genuine reason an employee may have to refuse to be vaccinated (eg health, religious).

It will be a question of the circumstances of employment which are unfortunately not always clear which is why you should obtain legal advice.

 

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