The Health Services Union has been in discussions with both State and Federal Governments seeking further information into the planned national roll out of the COVID-19 vaccine for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
Members have raised concerns surrounding the process and application of the COVID-19 vaccine, and if it is mandatory for employees to be vaccinated to continue to provide care to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. Your union is still seeking further information on this as a matter of urgency.
Whilst the Australian Government aims to have as many people vaccinated as possible in 2021, identified priority groups will get the first available doses that are proven to be safe and effective.
In accordance with the COVID-19 national rollout strategy and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Group on COVID-19, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults will be eligible for the vaccine in the second priority group (Phase 1B) of the National Rollout Strategy which will commence indicatively from early March 2021. The second priority group (1B) includes all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults and non-Indigenous adults over 70 years or with chronic medical conditions.
You can view the advisory taskforce communique update here.
Should you have any questions or concerns, please contact HSU Organiser, Josh Howarth via email [E-Mail not displayed] with subject line Covid-19 Vaccine.
A union's effectiveness and negotiation power depends on the strength and density of its membership. If you know someone who is not yet a member of the Health Services Union, please forward them this newsletter and invite them to join the Union at www.hsu.asn.au/join or phone 1300 478 679.