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York businesses urged to support employee vaccination

Published Monday, 7 June 2021

COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on so many lives and livelihoods and we acknowledge how difficult this past year has been for businesses.

However we are asking you to do more to help control the spread of the virus and help ensure the safety of your workforce by supporting the roll-out of the COVID vaccination programme. As well as this being the right thing to do to support the safe re-opening of the City, there is good evidence to suggest that it makes good economic sense too. A vaccinated workforce will significantly reduce levels of sickness and improve productivity and is, therefore, good for business. A business case developed by Public Health England is attached with this letter.

The vaccines being used in the UK are safe and effective and are already having a significant impact in helping to stop the spread of the virus, reducing the number of infections and hospital admissions and saving lives.

Please do everything you can to support your workforce to be able to attend a vaccination appointment by giving them paid time off work for their appointment or by allowing them to work their hours flexibly so they can get their vaccination without loss of wages. We have been contacted by a number of residents who have explained that not being able to take paid time off work is a major barrier to them being vaccinated since they cannot afford to lose pay. We are aware that some employers are already going the extra mile to support their staff but for those employers who have not yet done so we respectfully urge you to review your policies and make any changes necessary to be able to support all of your staff to have easy access to vaccination without the risk of losing out financially.

Thank you for your support. If you require any further information or to discuss what additional support we may be able to give you please contact enquiries.publichealth@york.gov.uk addressing your query to the Director of Public Health.

Yours sincerely

Sharon Stoltz, Director of Public Health, City of York Council                        

Dr Nigel Wells, Clinical Chair, Vale of York CCG             

Dr James Taylor, Medical Director, York Hospital