SAN FRANCISCO—On October 8, the Mayor of San Francisco announced that it will be mandatory for city contractors who work alongside city workers to be vaccinated for COVID-19. Mayor London N. Breed issued a Mayoral Order mandating vaccination for all city contractors that work alongside city employees on a regular basis at a facility owned, leased, or controlled by San Francisco. This mandate will apply to all City Commissioners. All contractors will be required to be fully vaccinated by December 31.
According to a press release from the Mayor’s Office, the City Contractor Mandate will work in tandem with San Francisco’s Worker Vaccine Mandate, which requires all city employees to be fully vaccinated no later than November 1, with earlier deadlines for those who work in high-risk facilities like jails, hospitals, and homeless shelters. Contractors who work in high-risk settings are required to be vaccinated under Health Orders. The City Contractor Mandate will ensure that all those who regularly work alongside City workers are vaccinated. Examples include:
-If a contractor employee has a work station at a City office building and is working there in person a few days per week.
-If a nonprofit employee is working at the nonprofit worksite where City employees are regularly working.
Contractors may grant exemptions for employees based on qualifying medical reasons or religious beliefs consistent with the City Worker Mandate.
“Our vaccine mandate for City employees has always been about protecting the public we serve and protecting our workforce,” said Mayor Breed. “By extending the mandate to contractors who work alongside our City workers, we are continuing to do everything we can to keep our City workforce strong and healthy. Vaccines are safe and effective, and they are our path out of this pandemic. San Francisco is leading the way on implementing strong vaccine policies that will lift us up in the months ahead as we push forward with our recovery.”
Under the Mayoral Order, the City Administrator’s Office is tasked with issuing processes and procedures to implement this vaccine mandate and providing guidance to City Departments and Contractors about the policy.
“Our workforce is our most valuable asset. We’ve learned upon our workers to continue delivering critical public services throughout the pandemic because that’s what we all signed up to do,” said City Administrator Carmen Chu. “Vaccine requirements to those who work beside us is a natural extension of our commitment to protect our workforce and the public we serve.”
San Francisco workforce has one of these highest vaccination rates of any city in the United States with over 94 percent vaccinated against COVID-19, with just over 2,000 employees out of 35,000 registered as either unvaccinated or have not yet reported their status. Under San Francisco’s vaccination requirement for employees, the first implemented in the country, all city employees must be fully vaccinated no later than November 1 in order to continue employment with the city, with exemptions provided for qualifying medical reasons or sincerely held religious beliefs.
“We are pleased with our high vaccination rate and that our employees, who interact with vulnerable populations on a daily basis, have made the decision to protect their colleagues and our communities by getting vaccinated”, said Carol Isen, Human Resources Director. “Mandating that all contractors who work alongside City employees, is the right thing to do and supports all of the precautions we have taken thus far to keep our workers healthy and safe throughout the pandemic.”
The City Contractor Mandate, as well as the City Worker Mandate are part of San Francisco’s effort to combat the impacts of COVID-19 with the most effective tool available: the vaccine. Over 82 percent of eligible San Francisco residents are fully vaccinated, which is the highest of any major city in the country. San Francisco has a current average of 77 cases per day, a drop from 309 at the height of the summer’s surge. Cases among fully vaccinated individuals are currently at 7.4 per 100,000, while among those not fully vaccinated are 14.4 per 100,000. The vaccines remain highly effective in preventing hospitalization and death.
“City contractors are an important part of the broader workforce that delivers needed services to San Francisco, so it’s important for contractors to also be vaccinated and contribute to lowering the spread of COVID-19 on City facilities and among staff,” said Director of Health, Dr. Grant Colfax. “Vaccines remain our best defense against COVID-19, and everyone who is eligible for should get one.”