Mark McGowan pulls a Dan Andrews: WA Premier mandates Covid vaccinations for 75 per cent of the workforce
- Covid vaccinations compulsory for three-quarters of workforce by end of 2021
- WA premier said step necessary to prepare state for community transmission
- Workers include port, transport and freight, aged care workers and teachers
- Supermarkets, groceries, restaurants also covered along with MPs and gov staff
Covid-19 vaccinations will be compulsory for three-quarters of Western Australian workers including teachers and supermarket staff by the end of the year.
Premier Mark McGowan on Wednesday said the drastic step was necessary to prepare the state for community transmission of the virus.
The sweeping vaccine mandate will cover three groups representing 75 per cent of the WA workforce.
Employers who are caught using workers who have not been vaccinated will be fined $100,000, and employees risk $20,000 fines for flouting the order.
Covid-19 vaccinations will be compulsory for three-quarters of the West Australian workforce by the end of the year, Premier Mark McGowan has announced. Pictured are construction site workers in Perth
‘It is proportionate and reasonable, and is aimed at preparing Western Australia safely for the inevitable community transmission,’ Mr McGowan said on Wednesday.
The first group includes port, transport, and freight workers, health and aged care staff, police and FIFO mining workers.
Community workers, fire and emergency services employees, abattoir and meat processing workers, and prison staff are also on the list.
They must receive their first dose by December 1 and be fully vaccinated by December 31.
The second group includes staff at supermarkets, groceries, restaurants, pubs and cafes, as well as childcare, public transport and construction workers.
They must get their first dose by year’s end and second by January 31.
All teachers and school staff must be fully vaccinated by the start of term one.
The Western Australian workers who must get a Covid jab
First dose by December 1, second dose by December 31:
Remaining public and private hospitals and public healthcare facilities Primary and community health
Onsite resources sector
Border and air transport
Staff working in or entering remote Aboriginal communities
First dose by December 31, second dose by January 31:
Supermarkets, grocery, bakery
Restaurant, pub, bar or cafe workers
Post office workers
Hardware store workers
Child care or family day care
In the event of a lockdown:
Critical factories, manufacturing, fabrication and production
Government or local government services where working from home is not possible
The full list of occupations is on the Western Australian government website
The government also outlined a third group of workers who must be fully vaccinated to got to work in the event of a lockdown.
They include government employees, members of parliament, and other retail workers.
Industry roundtables will be held ahead of the policy being implemented to ensure businesses and workers are prepared.
WA is on track to have more than 60 per cent of people aged 12 and over fully vaccinated in coming days, but still trails other states and territories.
Mr McGowan said the rate continued to climb but warned ‘people should not wait until the eleventh hour’.
‘The time is now,’ he said.
‘I want to make it abundantly clear that everyone who is eligible should get the Covid-19 vaccine now as we all need to be prepared for the event of community transmission or a lockdown.
‘Don’t wait for the deadly Delta variant to enter before you consider getting the vaccine. Get the Covid-19 vaccine now.’
Premier Mark McGowan on Wednesday said the drastic step is necessary to prepare the state for community transmission of the virus
Police are seen patrolling outside the District Court of West Australia in Perth on Tuesday.
The premier also dashed any hopes WA would reopen for Christmas, saying he didn’t want to impose restrictions such as mask-wearing during the festive season.
Queensland outlined plans to scrap quarantine for fully vaccinated domestic travellers by December 17.
Mr McGowan refused to follow suit, saying WA was on track to reach 80 per cent vaccination in December at which point further certainty would be provided.
He has previously indicated there would be at least a two-month lag between WA hitting an undefined mark between 80 and 90 per cent vaccinated, and the border actually opening.
It means WA’s border will almost certainly remain shut to NSW, Victoria and the ACT for the rest of the year.