How Can Employers Deal with Anti-Vax Workers?

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“The spontaneous decision of an employee not to get vaccinated could lead to his suspension from work, in cases of impossibility of assignment to a different job, without prejudice to the judgment of the company doctor who may deem a worker unsuitable based on the type of duties to be carried out and the risk of contagion existing within the working context for oneself and for others” comments Stefano Trifirò, labour lawyer of the law firm Trifirò & Partners. Referring to the decision of the Court of Rome, which considered legitimate the behaviour of the employer who suspended an anti-vax employee from work and remuneration, “the employer did not have the possibility to assign the worker to another job and hence the decision to suspend them until lifting of the restrictions linked to the spread of Covid-19, or until a possible judgment of suitability (for example, in the event that the worker decides to undergo the vaccine)”. The ruling of the Court of Rome is also important in light of what is happening with the mandatory Green Pass in companies. “The orientation of the prevailing jurisprudence to date is in favour of the need for the obligatory Green Pass, also in consideration of the fact that the certificate has the advantage of being able to protect the privacy of the employee on the one hand and allows the employer to guarantee suitable working conditions while protecting the health of all employees” clarifies Trifirò. Of course, the judgment of the company doctor is essential for the purpose of suspension also of the salary because if a doctor considers an employee unsuitable to perform the tasks assigned to him, the entrepreneur can legitimately refuse to receive the service and suspend him from remuneration.

by Stefano Trifiro

September 2021

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