No photo available

16 views - 4 weeks ago

DOLE: ‘no vaccine, no work policy,’ illegal

WORKERS in the private sector, who refuse or fail to be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus should not be discriminated in their workplaces.

The advisory issued by Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III just last week highlighted the “No Vaccine, No Work Policy,” being illegal.

Lately, news regarding some companies requiring their employees to get the vaccine before reporting to work became an area of concern, which the Department of Labor and Employment has finally clarified through Labor Advisory No. 03, Series of 2021 or the Guidelines on the Administration of COVID-19 Vaccines in the Workplaces.

“It would still be up to the workers, whether or not, they want to be vaccinated. Therefore, no worker must be forced to get the vaccine shot,” said DOLE-7 Regional Director Salome O. Siaton.

She said companies could only encourage their employees to get vaccinated but such is something that they could not impose upon them since it is not allowed by law.

Siaton cited a portion of the advisory that said, “Employees who refuse to be vaccinated should not be discriminated against in terms of tenure, promotion, training, pay and other benefits, among others, or terminated from employment.”

Administering the vaccine shots to those, who are willing to get vaccinated is one thing. Forcing those, who are not willing to get the vaccine shots is another,” she added. She said that covered establishments or those in the private sector may procure COVID-19 vaccines, supplies and other services. “If companies have all these facilities at their disposal, then they must be able to adopt and implement the appropriate vaccination policy as part of their Occupational Safety and Health Program that is consistent with the guidelines issued by the Department Of Health and the Inter-Agency Task Force or IATF,” she explained.

Companies may also seek the support of the appropriate government agencies in the procurement, storage, transport, deployment, and administration of COVID-19 vaccines, she continued.

The cost of the vaccination if administered in the workplacemust not be shouldered by the workers. “No cost of vaccination in the workplace shall be charged against or passed on, directly or indirectly, to the employees,” Director Siaton finally said.