Majority of employers want right to ask workers for Covid-19 vaccination proof
The majority of employers want to be able to know if their employees have been vaccinated against Covid-19, a study by the employers’ union AWVN showed. Around 70 percent out of 600 participants feared for the safety of the workplace as more and more employees return to working on-site.
It is not possible in the Netherlands for employers to ask their employees about their vaccination status based on current legislation. Registering employees’ medical details is in conflict with the privacy law (AVG) and the right to physical sanctity. “Those are fundamental rights that can feel very heavy”, professor of employment law Evert Verhulp said to the Volkskrant.
Employers who were against asking their workers for proof of vaccination gave privacy concerns as their main reasoning.
Customers, on the other hand, can in some cases even be required to show proof of vaccination, for example, through the CoronaCheck app.
“How can we protect our customers if are not allowed to know anything about our employees?”, one employer asked.
Around 93 percent of employers said they will take certain measures if employees who are not vaccinated show up at the workplace, an AWVN survey showed.
Before meetings, workers currently still have to get tested. “I would like for those who choose not to get vaccinated to bear the consequences. Now, it is the employees who got the jab”, commercial director of The Compound Company told the Volkskrant.
Certain companies in the United States, such as Google, Facebook and Netflix, already mandated Covid-19 vaccination for their employees several weeks ago. “In the Netherlands, the position of the employee is strongly anchored”, professor of work regulation Agnes Akkerman said. “That is different in the United States.”
In certain functions, such as when people work together closely, employers should be allowed to ask for a vaccination certificate, according to the AWVN. Some members of the Outbreak Management Team (OMT) urged the Cabinet on Wednesday to allow Covid-19 vaccination registration to be permitted in the healthcare sector.
The AWVN called for the Cabinet to give clarity to the situation as soon as possible.