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Employers afforded new powers regarding COVID-19 vaccination in Victoria

Workplace Relations & Safety
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The new Occupational Health and Safety Amendment (COVID-19 Vaccination Information) Regulations 2022 (Vic) will give employers in Victoria the power to collect information relating to the COVID-19 vaccination status of their workers. From 12 July 2022 for a period of 12 months, employers who choose to implement mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policies can collect, record, hold, and use COVID-19 vaccination information from employees, contractors, or volunteers in their workplace. This information includes the dates on which the vaccination was administered, or details of relevant medical exemptions.

A statement issued by the Victorian Government says the policy will help employers decide on the most effective measures to keep their workplaces safe, following the recent lifting of some overarching vaccination requirements under pandemic orders. The regulations do not require workers to be vaccinated. Rather, they will assist to ensure employers have the information they need to make decisions on control measures at their workplace, which may include vaccination. However, mandatory COVID-19 vaccination requirements still apply to workers in high-risk settings such as hospitals and aged care homes.

The changes have been supported by State Workplace Safety Minister Ingrid Stitt and Health Minister Mary-Anne Thomas, who stressed that the pandemic isn't over and that vaccines are still the best defence against serious illness and hospitalisation. "We're ensuring employers can continue to take steps to keep their employees and workplaces COVIDsafe," Thomas said.

Read the full statement from the Victorian Government.

Read the updated OHS Regulations.

If you'd like to discuss how these changes may impact your organisation, please contact a member of our team.

Photo by Towfiqu Barbhuiya on Unsplash.

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Cristina Trafficante

Cristina Trafficante

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