Employers operating in Moscow and the Moscow Region are now required to arrange for coronavirus vaccination of 60% of the total headcount of their employees by August 15, 2021. (Order of the Moscow Chief Sanitary Officer of June 15, 2021 and the Order of the Moscow Region Chief Sanitary Officer of the Moscow Region of June 16, 2021, No.3, “On preventive vaccinations of some groups of individuals according to epidemiological indications”)
CEOs of organizations and individual entrepreneurs operating in Moscow or the Moscow Region are required to arrange for COVID-19 vaccination of at least 60% of the total headcount of their employees working under employment or civil-law agreements. The first shot or a single component vaccine should be received by employees by July 15, 2021 and the second shot by August 15, 2021.
The requirement applies to employers operating in the following sectors:
beauty parlors, beauty shops, spa, massage parlors, sun parlors, bath houses, saunas, heath and fitness centers, gyms, swimming pools;
domestic services, including wash houses, dry cleaners and similar services;
front offices of financial organizations, post offices;
multiservice centers for government and municipal services;
public transport, taxi cab services;
education, healthcare, social protection, social assistance;
housing and utilities and power industry;
cultural, exhibition and educational events(including museums, exhibition rooms, libraries, lectures, trainings), except for official events arranges by executive authorities;
leisure and entertainment events and shows (including gaming events and masterclasses);
children’s playrooms, children’s entertainment centers, children’s daytime camps or other places for underage in buildings or facilities (rooms therein), including leisure and entertainment parks and shopping centers;
theaters, movie theaters, performance halls;
mass fitness events, sports events.
Also, government civil and municipal employees as well as employees of government agencies, including subordinate organizations, of Moscow and the Moscow Region, should be vaccinated.
The Moscow Region Chief Sanitary Officer specifically notes in his Order that employees engaged in advertising and promotion events should be vaccinated.
Individuals with contraindications to coronavirus vaccination are exempt from the vaccination requirement.
IS SUSPENSION FROM WORK REQUIRED FOR THOSE REFUSING TO GET VACCINATED
Coronavirus vaccination is required for certain employee categories if it is included on the preventive vaccination schedule for epidemiological indications at the time of rendering a relevant order of the Chief Sanitary Officer of a constituent of the Russian Federation.
Coronavirus vaccine was included on the preventive vaccination schedule at the end of 2020 according to epidemiological indications. Inclusion on the schedule means that such vaccination is not mandatory until the Chief Sanitary Officer of the Russian Federation or its constituent releases a mandatory vaccination order according to epidemiological indications. Once such order is issued, the vaccination becomes mandatory for the employee categories named in the order. Such orders have been issued by the Chief Sanitary Officers of Moscow and the Moscow Region.
According to the Orders, the preventive vaccination against the new coronavirus infection is now mandatory for certain categories of individuals. For employers operating in the sectors named in the Orders, the employee vaccination requirement has the following implications.
Firstly, employers are required to arrange within the defined time limit for vaccination of at least 60% of the total employee headcount. To “arrange:” means to issue a relevant directive, ensure that employees read it, request employees to provide information on whether or not they got vaccinated, include non-vaccinated employees on relevant lists, provide the lists to healthcare organizations, order employees to get vaccinated, receive information on employee getting vaccination or having contraindications to vaccination or refusing to get vaccinated.
Secondly, employers are required to suspend from work employees refusing to get vaccinated and to refrain from hiring non-vaccinated individuals. Such consequences of refusal to get vaccinated are set forth in Article 5 (2.3) of the Federal Law of September 17, 1998, No. 157-FZ. According Article 76 of the Labor Code, no salary accrues for the period while an employee is being suspended from work through his/her own fault.
Apart from that, under Section 14 of the Decree of the Mayor of Moscow of June 16, 2021, No. 32-UM, during the period from July 1, 2021 through July 15, 2021 employers are required to provide electronically personally identifiable information on vaccinated employees, using a special form.
Some employers may face threatening interruption of their operations if a majority of their employees refuse to get vaccinated or threatening liability for non-compliance with the Orders. Therefore companies are encouraged to assess without delay the vaccinated and non-vaccinated employee ratio to take eventually appropriate managerial decisions.