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Richmond Mayor: 30 city workers could lose their jobs over COVID vaccines

Levar Stoney.png
Posted at 4:23 PM, Sep 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-15 18:31:16-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- The vaccination rate among the roughly 3,600 City of Richmond workers has outpaced that of the city's general population, according to Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney. City workers have an October 1, 2021, deadline to either be fully vaccinated or get a religious or medical vaccine exemption.

"Seventy-four percent [of city workers] are fully vaccinated. Ten percent are partially vaccinated and they are on track to meet our October 1 deadline for all of them to be fully vaccinated," Mayor Stoney said on Wednesday.

The mayor said another 10% of the city's workforce has been approved for exemptions — predominantly religious — and another 10% percent are currently on family/medical or military leave.

Last month, 15-percent of city workers were considered non-compliant and faced an early September 1 deadline to comply. Mayor Stoney said that number has since dropped to 30 workers total. Those workers are on unpaid leave and could be fired.

"The ultimate action is the termination separation from your employment here at the City of Richmond," he said. "We believe that the health and welfare of our employees is of utmost response, utmost priority, but also the health and welfare of the people that we interface with in our community."

September 1, 2021, was also the start date for Virginia Governor Ralph Northam’s mandate to roughly 122,000 state workers to either get vaccinated or submit to weekly COVID-19 testing.

Northam said on Wednesday that while he did not yet have an exact breakdown of how many state workers fell into each category -- there have been no issues with non-compliance.

"I think everybody that I know of is being compliant with either being vaccinated or tested," the governor said.