Proposal Requires Vaccinations for City Employees
More than 6,000 city workers would need to get vaccinated or face weekly testing.
A resolution pending before the Common Council would require City of Milwaukee employees to be vaccinated for COVID-19 or undergo regular COVID-19 testing.
“All City employees deserve to work in an environment where the risk of infection by COVID-19 has been minimized, and this legislation will help us create that safer workplace,” said sponsor Alderman Robert Bauman in a press release announcing the proposal’s introduction.
Bauman’s proposal would require vaccinations or weekly testing. Should any employees elect for weekly testing, they would also be required to wear a face mask at all times. No incentive is included with the policy, nor would the policy apply to contractors working at city facilities.
As of June, the city has a total of 6,239 active employees.
The Department of Employee Relations would be tasked with creating the official policy, including how vaccinations are verified. Employees not wishing to comply with the vaccination or testing requirement will not be permitted to work and could be subject to disciplinary action. The city’s human resources department would be given one month to implement the policy upon council adoption.
But unless the council calls a special meeting, it will be September before such a requirement can be adopted. The council is currently on its regularly scheduled August recess.
Bauman is likely to easily find six votes in support of his proposal. Council members Marina Dimitrijevic, Cavalier Johnson, Nik Kovac, Nikiya Dodd, JoCasta Zamarripa and Jose G. Perez sent a letter to Mayor Tom Barrett and Health Commissioner Kirsten Johnson last week calling for a policy similar to Bauman’s be enacted. They also called for a proposal to restore the city’s indoor mask mandate if case counts continue to climb.
Adoption of the policy would require at least eight votes.
Residents of the 53203 ZIP Code, which encompasses the Westown neighborhood, have a best-in-the-city vaccination rate of 69.1%, while residents of the 53206 ZIP Code have a city-worst vaccination rate of 29.6% according to state data.
The gap grows when looking at census tracts, with the Cambridge Woods neighborhood achieving a vaccination rate of 98.9% while a tract along N. 60th St. just north of W. Silver Spring Dr., is at 21.3%.
A city vaccination policy would emulate one being instituted or considered by a variety of employers, including Walmart, Walt Disney Company and EPIC Systems, the largest private employer in Dane County.
- Wisconsin Supreme Court To Take Up Case On Ivermectin - Erik Gunn - Oct 1st, 2022
- City of Milwaukee Weekly COVID-19 Update - City of Milwaukee Health Department - Sep 30th, 2022
- MKE County: County Drops Mask Rules for Courthouse, Buses - Graham Kilmer - Sep 30th, 2022
- MKE County: Milwaukee At Low Level of COVID-19 - Graham Kilmer - Sep 29th, 2022
- Federally Funded COVID-19 Vaccines Will End. What’s Next? - Graham Kilmer - Sep 27th, 2022
- Stay Healthy this Fall: COVID-19 At-Home Tests and Booster Shots Still Available with No Out-of-Pocket Cost - Wisconsin Department of Health Services - Sep 26th, 2022
- Supervisor Coggs-Jones Applauds Expanded Access to Free COVID-19 Self-Tests - Sup. Priscilla E Coggs-Jones - Sep 12th, 2022
- City of Milwaukee Weekly COVID-19 Update - City of Milwaukee Health Department - Sep 9th, 2022
- Milwaukee Health Department Begins Administration of Updated COVID-19 Booster Vaccine to Target Omicron Subvariant - City of Milwaukee Health Department - Sep 9th, 2022
- DHS Encourages Wisconsinites to Make a Plan to Get Boosted Against COVID-19 this Fall - Wisconsin Department of Health Services - Sep 7th, 2022
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