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Standard Bank announced that it has withdrawn its Covid-19 mandatory vaccine policy with immediate effect.

The bank received criticism from large union SASBO after it dismissed dozens of employees for refusing to get the Covid jab earlier this year.

MAJORITY OF EMPLOYEES HAVE BEEN VACCINATED

But 95% of the bank’s employees have been vaccinated. This is what motivated the bank to withdraw its policy immediately.

In reviewing its policy, Standard Bank took a range of factors into account including the recent uplifting of all Covid-19 regulations, the bank said this week.

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The company also considered the current state of the pandemic in the country and the high vaccination rate among its staff.

“On 23 June 2022, Standard Bank South Africa Chief Executive Lungisa Fuzile informed employees that the country had reached a significant milestone in managing Covid-19 pandemic, and that the bank would be revising some of its safety measures and the existing COVID-19 policy and protocols,” the bank said.

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The withdrawal of the policy means that it is no longer compulsory for employees to be vaccinated. For the unvaccinated staff, this means they will no longer need to produce a negative PCR or rapid antigen test in order to enter the premises.

“Based on the current context of the pandemic, we believe that our vaccination policy is no longer required.”

vaccine
Standard Bank said it was no longer required for their staff to have a compulsory Covid-19 vaccine. PHOTO: Flickr

COVID-19 VACCINE POLICY WITHDRAWAL COULD CHANGE

Despite the withdrawal of the policy, the Fuzile emphasised that the bank continues to support and encourage vaccination.

“Should circumstances with respect to the pandemic change, the bank may, in future, adjust and review its policy and protocols to maintain a safe working environment. Thank you for all your efforts in helping us maintain a safe working environment and continuing to serve our clients in what has been a challenging time for many of us,” Fuzile said to the bank’s employees.

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“Based on the current context of the pandemic, we believe that our vaccination policy is no longer required.

Consequentially, it is no longer compulsory for employees to be vaccinated, or to produce a negative PCR or Rapid Antigen test if they are unvaccinated, in order to enter our premises,” said Fuzile.

He emphasised that, even though the bank had withdrawn the policy, it continues to support and encourage vaccination.

Should circumstances with respect to the pandemic change, the bank may, in future, adjust and review its policy and protocols in order to maintain a safe working environment.

“Thank you for all your efforts in helping us maintain a safe working environment and continuing to serve our clients in what has been a challenging time for many of us,” said Fuzile in a communication to employees.

However, it is not yet clear what will happen to the staff dismissed for not receiving the jab.

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