San Francisco to Require COVID-19 Vaccination for All City Employees

June 28, 2021

More than 35,000 San Francisco municipal workers, including custodial and maintenance staff, must receive COVID-19 vaccines once they are fully approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or risk being fired, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) advised last month that companies were within their rights to require employees to receive COVID-19 vaccines. Earlier this month, San Francisco officials announced employees working in high-risk settings—including hospitals, nursing homes, and jails—must be fully vaccinated with “limited exemptions and within a specified timeframe.” The new policy extends this requirement to city workers and will make San Francisco the first city to mandate coronavirus vaccinations for all government employees, with an exception of teachers since they are school district employees, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

A letter posted on the city’s Department of Human Resources webpage read that once the FDA fully approves COVID-19 vaccines, all municipal employees must get vaccinated within 10 weeks. Exceptions will be made for medical and religious reasons.

Currently the three FDA emergency vaccines are made by Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson. Pfizer submitted its FDA full approval application on May 7 and Moderna on June 1. The FDA is expected to fully approve them within the coming months.