Workers Claim They Were Fired For Refusing Vaccine

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 There is currently no law in South Africa that requires a person to take the Covid-19 vaccine if they do not want to.


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 There is currently no law in South Africa that requires a person to take the Covid-19 vaccine if they do not want to.However, this has not prevented a number of private companies and universities from introducing proposals that would see Covid-19 vaccines be made mandatory.

These proposals include requiring employees/students to be vaccinated in order to have access to their facilities.

Cameron Morajane from The Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) has revealed that a number of workers have approached the labour dispute resolution body claiming they have been treated unfairly due to their vaccination status. Some have also claimed to have been dismissed for refusing to take the Covid-19 vaccine.

Morajane explained that in terms of the Labour Relations Act, Employment Equity Act and the Constitution protectection makes provisions for workers to refuse to take the vaccine. These refusals can be made on medical grounds, tradition or cultural beliefs.

He explained that disputes occur when the employer requires proof that your religion/culture says you do not or should not take vaccines. He says that employees have lost their jobs where that has not been any policy, vaccine mandate or risk assessment.

Earlier this year President Cyril Ramaphosa said, “I want to be clear, nobody will be forced to take this vaccine, I want to repeat nobody will be forced to take this vaccine”. While Morajane says this may be true, employers can choose to make vaccines mandatory

“We’ve got to engage on those two instruments in order to make it mandatory… it does create conditions which an employer can make it mandatory if you meet the conditions that are contained in the directive”, Concluded Morajane.

As of Tuesday November 16 2021, more than 24 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine have been administered and more than 13.5 million people have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19, which represents 33.9% of the population.

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