Milwaukee alderman proposes COVID-19 vaccination/testing requirement for city employees

Milwaukee City Hall
Milwaukee City Hall

Last updated on August 3rd, 2021 at 12:57 pm

All city of Milwaukee employees would be required to receive a COVID-19 vaccine or be tested weekly for the virus, under a resolution proposed by Alderman Robert Bauman.

Ald. Robert Bauman

The legislation introduced by Bauman, if approved by the full Common Council, would direct the Department of Employee Relations (DER) to develop a policy requiring all city employees to provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 or provide a weekly negative COVID-19 test as a condition of reporting to work.

COVID-19 cases have risen significantly in recent weeks as the more transmissible Delta variant of the virus spreads throughout the country. The seven-day average for confirmed COVID-19 cases in Wisconsin increased from 70 new cases per day in late June to 638 late last week, including more than 1,000 new cases reported on Thursday, according to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. The seven-day average for new confirmed and probable COVID-19 cases in Milwaukee County rose from 16 on June 20 to 208 on July 28, according to the DHS.

Requiring city employees to get a COVID-19 vaccine will help keep them safer, Bauman said.

“All city employees deserve to work in an environment where the risk of infection by COVID-19 has been minimized, and this legislation will help us create that safer workplace,” he said.

A rising number of organizations are requiring employees to get COVID-19 vaccines including Ascension Wisconsin, ProHealth Care, Children’s Wisconsin, the Medical College of Wisconsin, Walmart and Disney. Marquette University will require its students to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

So far, 51.9% of Wisconsin residents and 50.2% of Milwaukee County residents have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to DHS.

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Andrew Weiland is the editor of BizTimes Milwaukee. He joined BizTimes in 2003, serving as managing editor and real estate reporter for 11 years. A University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate, Weiland is a lifelong resident of the state. He lives in Muskego with his wife, Seng, and son, Zachary. He is an avid sports fan and enjoys coaching his son’s youth baseball and basketball teams.

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