Lifestyle & Wellbeing
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The official bill on compulsory jabs for “certain categories of people” in Monaco is now under consideration by the Committee on Social Interests and Miscellaneous Affairs before going to vote in September.
The mandatory Covid vaccination bill has been finalised by the government and was put on the table at the National Council’s last meeting on Tuesday. The bill will oblige people working in a selection of occupations who work with vulnerable individuals to be fully vaccinated or risk being let go.
The explanatory memorandum lays it out it plainly, saying, “It is clear that the current vaccination coverage rate is not yet satisfactory enough for certain categories of people, having, because of their activity, particular risks of contamination for themselves and for the vulnerable or fragile people they care for.”
To that end, healthcare workers and staff members of establishments, services or organisations whose mission is to welcome or accommodate vulnerable or fragile people, including volunteers, students and interns, must be vaccinated, whether they have regular direct contact with them or not. Reading between the lines, this means the bill could extend to restaurant, bar and hotel staff as well.
“This bill concerns the vaccination of staff in health establishments and those who carry out an activity in regular connection with vulnerable or fragile people,” President of the National Council, Stéphane Valeri said in a press release. “The National Council will not fail to amend it as necessary, with, as always, discernment, humanity and a sense of responsibility. It will be a question of understanding all aspects, especially the most sensitive on the human level, with a view to its vote in public session in mid-September.”
In a statement released late Thursday, the government said: “The objective of this text is to protect these professionals and workers from the particular risks of contamination by the SARS-CoV-2 virus for themselves, but also for the vulnerable or fragile people they take care of. Today, in the epidemic rebound phase that we are experiencing due to the Delta variant, 66% of health facility staff have received a first dose of a vaccine against Covid-19. It is imperative to further increase their immunisation coverage.
“For the Prince’s Government, this is an additional measure to limit the spread of the virus as much as possible, while ensuring the greatest possible protection. Indeed, commitment to a fragile or vulnerable person and a sense of service to others means not exposing those with whom we intervene. As such, caregivers, professionals working with vulnerable people, and volunteers accomplishing this type of mission must be protected in order to protect others.”
To allow time for people to get vaccinated, the law will not take effect until four weeks after the publication in the Journal of Monaco. If the employee misses this deadline, they can use their paid leave to fulfil the obligation. If the employee still has not gotten their inoculations, provided a valid proof of recovery or given a justified medical contradiction certificate, and their job requires this, they will continue to be paid at 50% for a four-week period, after which no remuneration will be given.
The government is serious about compliance and will hand out fines ranging from €200 to €600 for those who do not provide the documentation necessary, or for employers who do not meet the terms.
Photo by Manuel Vitali, Government Communication Department
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