Qantas mandates COVID-19 vaccine, WA quarantine hub plans

Qantas will make COVID-19 vaccine compulsory for its 22,000 workers, following a survey of its staff indicating support for the measure.

The airline announced on Wednesday (August 18) that its frontline employees, including cabin crew, pilots and airport workers, would need to be fully vaccinated by November 15, 2021.

Airport

The remainder of its staff have until March 31, 2022.

A majority (89 per cent) of Qantas and Jetstar staff who responded to a survey from the airline said they had already been or they planned to get vaccinated, with 4 per cent indicating an unwillingness to get the vaccine.

About three quarters said they think the COVID-19 vaccine should be a requirement for all employees and would be concerned if other staff were not vaccinated.

The airline will grant exemptions for those who are unable for documented medical reasons to be vaccinated, which is expected to be very rare.

This follows fruit and vegetable processor SPC making the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory for its onsite workers, with an expectation they get their first dose by at least mid-September.

The Fair Work Ombudsman recently updated its advice on COVID-19 vaccines in the workplace, indicating vaccines can only be mandatory in particular circumstances.

This advice reinforced the need for employers to obtain legal advice if they are seeking to go down this path.

CCIWA’s workplace relations lawyers can help employers navigate this issue. They can be contacted on 1300 422 492 or [email protected].

 

1,000-bed quarantine facility planned for WA

The State Government plans to build a purpose-built 1,000 bed quarantine facility near Perth, to manage international arrivals into WA from COVID-19 affected countries.

An agreement between the Federal and State Government was struck on Wednesday (August 18), with the Federal Government to fund the facility.

Federal Finance Minister Simon Birmingham said the facility, expected to be at Jandakot, will be designed to respond to COVID-19 as well as future emergencies and disasters.

“It will increase our ability to respond to future emergencies or disasters, including the continued management of the COVID-19 pandemic into next year,” he said.

“The project will also create jobs in the state, support economic recovery and provide an enduring asset to enhance the state’s medium and long-term capability to respond to future natural disasters or future health crises in the years to come.”

 

For up-to-date information on COVID-19, visit CCIWA’s COVID-19 site.

For advice and guidance, contact CCIWA’s Employee Relations Advice Centre on (08) 9365 7660 or [email protected].

 

 

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