Illinois has reached its first union agreement requiring vaccines for certain state workers in congregate facilities.
The agreement covers approximately 260 supervisory employees at the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) and the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) which are represented by VR-704. Employees must receive their first shot by October 14, 2021. Should an employee elect a two-dose vaccine, they must receive the second shot by November 18.
If employees do not receive the vaccine or an exemption by the dates identified, progressive disciplinary measures will be implemented, which may ultimately lead to discharge. The agreement includes a process whereby employees can seek an exemption based on medical contraindications or sincerely-held religious beliefs.
To further encourage vaccinations under the agreement with VR-704, employees will receive an additional personal day.
If the vaccine administration is not available during an employee’s regularly scheduled shift, the employee may be compensated at their regular pay for the time taken to receive the vaccine.
In addition, vaccinated employees will receive paid “COVID time,” so that if a vaccinated employee gets COVID-19, or must quarantine due to COVID-19, they will receive a period of paid time off without using their benefit time.