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SPC Becomes First Australian Company To Force All Employees To Get Covid-19 Vaccine

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SPC Becomes First Australian Company To Force All Employees To Get Covid-19 Vaccine

Australian fruit manufacturer SPC is the first company in the country to make staff get the coronavirus vaccine.

All employees will have to prove they've received the jab by the end of November if they want any chance of showing up to a shift.

SPC said it has made the tough decision to ensure they uphold the 'health and wellbeing' of their employees and 'the broader community'.

In a statement, the company said: "A fully vaccinated workforce will ensure that SPC can continue to deliver an essential service while helping Australia return to an open economy in line with the Prime Minister's four-point plan out of COVID."

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The food giant was also moved to act as the Delta variant of Covid-19 continues to wreak havoc across parts of Australia.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

New South Wales has been in lockdown for weeks and there have been outbreaks and a reintroduction of restrictions in several states as a result.

All casual and permanent staff, as well as contractors, will have to get their first dose scheduled by September 15 and they'll have to be jabbed by the end of October.

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SPC Chairman Hussein Rifai said mandating the Covid-19 vaccine is the 'right thing to do'.

"Lockdowns are not a sustainable solution and the Australian economy needs to open up again. The Delta variant poses a significant threat to our people, our customers and the communities we serve," he said.

"The only path forward for our country is through vaccination."

The company's CEO, Robert Giles, explained how the vaccination pledge will add to their already rigorous safety plan for the pandemic.

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He said: "Australian companies must go further by rapidly vaccinating their staff. By taking proactive steps now, we are shoring up our Company for the future,.

"We firmly believe that it will be manufacturers and innovators like SPC who will help drive Australia's post-COVID economic recovery."

Credit: SPC/Twitter
Credit: SPC/Twitter

The Fair Work Ombudsman revealed there are only 'limited circumstances' where an employer can force their staff to get vaccinated.

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There would have to be a clause in the employee contract that would allow for something like that and it would have to fall in line with the state or territory public health law.

"In the current circumstances, the overwhelming majority of employers should assume that they can't require their employees to be vaccinated against coronavirus," the Ombudsman website states.

Based in Victoria's Goulburn Valley, SPC is responsible for the likes of Ardmona, Goulburn Valley, SPC and Kuisine.

They now join a raft of companies overseas, like Disney, Google, Facebook and Netflix who will be requiring all staff to get vaccinated.

Featured Image Credit: SPC/Twitter

Topics: Australia

Stewart Perrie
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