Employers / Workplace Operators
The COVID-19 vaccine is our best defence against the virus. As we work to implement the NT’s Roadmap toward COVID-Safe Freedoms, it is critical that we provide our community, our businesses and our frontline workers with protection and certainty as we start to open up.
The Delta strain of COVID-19 is much more infectious and will make its way into the Territory. We cannot afford for people working in key industries to be struck down with COVID-19 and we cannot afford for there to be a COVID-19 outbreak in our remote communities. Our communities are vulnerable and our hospitals do not have the capacity to manage a Territory-wide outbreak.
It is critical that our workers get vaccinated to protect themselves, their families and all of the NT. Two doses of the vaccine gives you around 90% protection against hospitalisation and death from COVID-19.
Most states and territories in Australia have introduced vaccination as a requirement for certain workers. This is also in line with recommendations from the Australian Health Protection and Principal Committee (AHPPC) and the National Plan to Reopen.
Based on the advice of our health experts, the NT will require all workers who the mandatory vaccine CHO Direction applies, to have their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by 12 November 2021 to continue working in the same role. They will need to be fully vaccinated by 24 December 2021.
The employer or workplace operator is required to collect information about a worker’s vaccination status and keep a register of this as well as a record that evidence of vaccination has been sighted. A copy of the worker’s vaccination certificate or immunisation history only needs to be sighted, it does not need to be stored or filed.
Information about a worker’s vaccination status will need to be provided to an authorised officer upon request.
Workers can show employees a copy of their COVID-19 digital certificate or their immunisation history statement as evidence of their vaccination status.
Workers can also get their local GP to print a copy of their statement for them if they are unable to access their COVID-19 vaccination certificate online.
If a worker has not complied with the requirement to get vaccinated against COVID-19, they must not attend their normal workplace. If your staff are unable to attend the workplace, this may affect their employment.
An employer or workplace operator is able to make alternative arrangements for a worker who has not complied with the mandatory vaccination requirement including working at an alternative location or in a manner which complies with the CHO Direction.
Exemptions to the CHO Direction mandating vaccination for certain workers are only permitted where the person is not able to receive an approved vaccine because they have a contraindication to all available COVID-19 vaccines and they have evidence of this.
The employee will need to get a medical certificate from their GP or the Commonwealth confirming they are contraindicated to all available COVID-19 vaccines.
Individuals or employers can, and should request the contractor to provide proof of vaccination. As per the CHO Direction for mandatory vaccinations, contractors are defined as workers, and therefore required to be vaccinated.
Yes. A worker or employee as outlined in the CHO Direction includes volunteers, students on placement and contractors (who may not come under the legal definition of employee).
The penalty for failing to abide by the Chief Health Officer Directions issued under section 56 of the Public and Environment Health Act 2011 is $5024 for an individual (32 penalty units) and $25,120 for a business (160 penalty units).