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Standard Bank to engage with dismissed unvaccinated employees

Lender has rethink on its Covid-19 jabs policy and axings

15 July 2022 - 17:34
Standard Bank has changed its mind about firing its unvaccinated employees.
Standard Bank has changed its mind about firing its unvaccinated employees.
Image: File/ Reuters

Finance union Sasbo on Friday said Standard Bank had confirmed it had started engagements with all the employees it fired for not being vaccinated against Covid-19. 

Sasbo confirmed that the talks were about “re-employment opportunities” at the bank.

This comes after Sasbo, which represents more than 70,000 banking and finance workers, said it would challenge all cases where union members were dismissed for not vaccinating. The union had said it was aware of about 40 employees who were dismissed.

General secretary Modime Joe Kokela said many other employees were on special leave pending their incapacity hearings.

“With the lifting of all Covid-19 regulations by the government and with the high percentage of Standard Bank employees being vaccinated, there is no reason for the bank to continue with enforcement of its mandatory vaccination policy. We are pleased that those members who were dismissed will be offered re-employment by the bank. It’s a great victory for Sasbo and its members,” said the union.

The bank said with 95% of its employees vaccinated, it has withdrawn its Covid-19 vaccination policy with immediate effect.

Standard Bank SA CEO Lungisa Fuzile said in reviewing its policy, the bank took a range of factors into account, including recent regulatory developments, the state of the pandemic in SA, and the high vaccination rate among its employees. 

“Based on the current context of the pandemic, we believe that our vaccination policy is no longer required. Consequentially, it is no longer compulsory for employees to be vaccinated, or to produce a negative PCR or rapid antigen test if they are unvaccinated, to enter our premises,” said Fuzile.

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