Ending Vaccine Mandate for JCC Staff
February 21, 2023
It has been almost two years since the JCC held its first vaccination clinic in March 2021 and many members of our staff family gratefully received their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. Once the FDA gave full approval to the new vaccines, our agency made the decision to make Covid-19 vaccination a condition of employment based on recommendations and evidence from local, statewide and national health experts. This proactive response to minimize the risk and impact of Covid-19 in our community reflected our values and our responsibility to keep our people healthy and our JCC sustainable.
Since the policy was enacted, we have seen the pandemic take twists and turns – variants with names full of Greek words and multiple rounds of boosters. Through it all, we have consistently revisited our policies while evaluating any new CDC and health department recommendations and seeking guidance from trusted medical experts.
The times we find ourselves in now are, thankfully, very different. The vast majority of Americans have now received the primary series of vaccines, hospitalization trends are down 82% from their peak a little over a year ago, and vaccines have been approved for everyone over 6 months of age.
Each one of us has played an important role in partnering to build a healthier Milwaukee. We are grateful for this partnership and the respect and trust we have all invested in one another.
Having served its initial purpose, agency leadership has determined that the employee vaccine mandate is no longer needed to ensure we are providing and maintaining a healthy workplace environment. Moving forward, it will not be a condition of employment for new hires who choose to join our staff family and serve our community.
We will, however, continue to strongly encourage staff, vendors, members, and our community to get vaccinated and stay up-to-date with available Covid-19 and influenza boosters, as recommended by the CDC. We also ask staff to continue monitoring common virus symptoms and wear a mask or work from home (if possible) when under the weather. If a member of our staff family tests positive for Covid-19, it is reported to their supervisor and current isolation protocols are followed.
The hard work we all have done to return to our community spaces and greet each other face-to-face should not be taken for granted, even without a mandate in place.