LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – The Los Angeles City Council unanimously approved an ordinance Wednesday requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for all city employees except for those who have medical or religious exemptions.
“When we originally moved to require city employees to be vaccinated, we were one of the first cities in the country to do so. Now multiple states, including California, and other large cities across the country have all began to require their public servants be vaccinated,” said Council President Nury Martinez.” This is not radical, this is just common sense.”
Last month, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced that all city employees would be required to show proof of vaccination or undergo weekly testing.
However, the proposed ordinance would go a step further and require all employees to be fully vaccinated with the Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccines by Oct 5. Only those with a medical or religious exemption would be able to opt out.
Exemption requests would be evaluated on a case-by-case basis and be due by Sept. 7. People would be qualified for an exemption if they have a medical condition or sincerely held religious beliefs, practices or observances that prevent them from receiving the vaccine, according to the proposed ordinance.
Employees who are unvaccinated, partially vaccinated or have not reported their vaccination status would be “ineligible to promote or transfer” until they are fully vaccinated, according to the draft ordinance.
The ordinance received unanimous approval upon its first reading Wednesday. Councilmen Marqueece Harris- Dawson and John Lee were absent from the vote.
All this comes amid a surge in cases brought on by the highly contagious Delta variant.
Last week, the L.A. Unified School District announced that all its teachers and staff will be required to be fully vaccinated by Oct. 15.
The L.A. City Council also last week unanimously approved moving forward with a proposal that would require people to have at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine in order to enter most indoor public spaces, such as restaurants, gyms, entertainment venues and even some retailers.
(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)