LA County: Union Pushes Back Against Unreasonable Oct. 1 Vaccine Deadline

During a Sept. 16 bargaining session over the effect and impacts of LA County’s vaccination mandate, negotiators for the county continued to peddle an Oct. 1 deadline for employees to be fully vaccinated.

While SEIU 721 has strongly encouraged all members to receive vaccinations to safeguard the health and safety of themselves and their families, we have continued to actively negotiate over the impacts of the county’s mandate.

In the bargaining session, SEIU 721’s Bargaining Policy Committee (BPC) pushed back on the county’s proposed Oct. 1 deadline, citing several critical flaws in the “corrective action plan.” For example:

  • According to the county’s definition, “fully vaccinated” means having received a final vaccine dose two weeks prior to the Oct. 1 deadline. That means that county employees would need to have received their final shot by Sept. 17 to meet this deadline. Considering that negotiations are still ongoing, and accommodation request forms are just now being made available, the Oct. 1 deadline is completely unrealistic.
  • County negotiators presented a “corrective action plan” that begins with a “Notice of Non-Compliance” that would start the clock ticking toward a time after which employees could be disciplined. But the county’s plan is to issue the notice to all employees who are not “non-compliant,” even if they have received a first shot, and even if they have a pending request for religious or medical accommodation. This is obviously completely unreasonable and makes the county’s continued commitment to the Oct. 1 deadline look more and more like a scare tactic rather than a reasonable personnel policy.

By the end of the day, county negotiators had to acknowledge that their timeline and corrective action plan is flawed. They agreed to return to the bargaining table next week with with a revised plan.

Your SEIU 721 Bargaining Policy Committee is determined to fight for a plan that gives all members ample time to fully understand the policy, consider all available options, and invoke their rights to request accommodation.

Categories: Los Angeles County
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Gipetto Schmidt

Where is our HERO pay?