Employers are facing a range of complex employment law issues as the
rollout of the coronavirus vaccine gains pace. These Coronavirus (Covid-19)
Vaccination – FAQs for Employers cover many of the legal issues that
employers may face.
As far as reasonably practicable, employers have a duty to ensure the
health and safety at work of their employees. Asking employees to agree to
a vaccination against coronavirus (Covid-19) is likely to be a reasonable
step to take to reduce the risk to employees' health. However, vaccination
requires an individual’s informed and voluntary consent and so an employer
cannot compel an employee to be vaccinated if they do not wish to be so.
Employers might decide to require all new employees to have the Covid-19 vaccination
. Should an employer take this approach they must ensure that they do not
inadvertently discriminate against individuals on the grounds of protected
characteristics under the Equality Act. Employees may refuse the Covid-19
vaccination on medical grounds. Employees may also refuse to be vaccinated
on the basis of their religious beliefs. Employers will have to deal with
each case on its merits and listen carefully to an employee’s reasons for
These Coronavirus (Covid-19) Vaccination – FAQs cover the following areas:
1. Can an employer require employees to have a COVID-19 vaccine?
2. Do employees have to let their employer know if they are getting a
3. Can employers require all new employees to have the COVID-19
vaccination as a condition of employment?
4. Can an employer take disciplinary action against an employee for
refusing to have the coronavirus vaccine?
5. What can an employer do when employees refuse the coronavirus
vaccination on medical advice?
6. Can pregnant or breastfeeding employees refuse the coronavirus
7. What is the position on employees who refuse vaccination because of
their religion or belief?
Further information on employment issues and the COVID-19 vaccination can
be found on the ACAS website:
General advice on the coronavirus vaccination can be accessed on the NHS
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