Mandatory Vaccinations for Health and Education Workforce. Lock downs Continue for Auckland, Waikato and Northland

New Zealand’s Cabinet has decided that COVID-19 vaccination will become mandatory for the health and education workforce.

COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins announced that “high risk” workers in the health and disability sectors must be fully vaccinated by 1 December 2021 and will need to receive their first dose by 30 October.

School and early learning staff and anyone who supports or assists in child care who has contact with children will need to be fully vaccinated by 1 Jan 2022 with the first dose to be completed by 15 November.

These sectors join the MIQ and border control workforce who are already required to be fully vaccinated.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced that Auckland will stay at Alert Level 3 for another week. Cabinet will review this next Monday. In Auckland, schools that were set to reopen on 18 October will remain closed. Waikato and Northland will remain at Alert Level 3 till Thursday 14 October at 11.59 pm. COVID-19 Minister Chris Hipkins will confirm the move to Alert Level 2 for Waikato and Northland on Tuesday.

As of today there are 35 new community cases, all in the Auckland region.

The work to ensure Pasifika people are vaccinated continues with the Government announcing the availability of $1.1 million through ‘Prepare Pacific Community Vaccination Fund’ to directly support Pacific community-led initiatives towards increasing vaccinations.

In a press release, the Associate Minister of Health Aupito William Sio announced the Prepare Pacific Vaccination Fund is now open and will run until 30 June 2022, or until funds have been fully distributed.

National vaccination figures for Pacific peoples show that 75 per cent have received their first dose, and 48 per cent are fully vaccinated.

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Image credit: Ministry of Health / New Zealand Government