As Vax Rates Increase, San Jose Gives Employees One More Week to Get First Covid-19 Shots

Thursday was the deadline for all San Jose city employees to be vaccinated against COVID-10, but the city announced today it is giving unvaccinated workers a “one-week grace period” to get vaccinated, before facing a “disciplinary process” that could lead to their dismissal in 2022.

“The update to the policy will allow unvaccinated individuals, without a religious or medical exemption, a one-week ‘grace period’ to seek vaccination before being placed on a one-week unpaid suspension, the first step in the disciplinary process,” the city said in a statement.

Unvaccinated employees will be required to test negative twice a week at their own time and expense.

City officials reported “significant progress” in implementing its mandatory vaccination policy, announced in early August.

Total city workforce vaccination has increased from 89% to 92% in recent weeks. The Police Department has increased from 82% vaccinated to 86% vaccinated as of Sept. 24 and the Fire Department reported a 92% vaccination rate.

“San Jose doesn’t want to push anyone out of their employment with the city, but we have a responsibility to continue to deliver critical city services, safely, to our residents,” said San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo. “We know new variants are emerging, which only furthers the need to ensure we have a vaccinated workforce. Our ability to provide essential services to our community without increased risk of interruptions from exposures depends on it.”

Because of the impacts on city services, employees who remain unvaccinated will be given staggered disciplinary one-week suspensions, the city said.

“As the city works to reduce potential service impacts and give employees additional opportunities to get vaccinated, unvaccinated employees going through the disciplinary process will remain in the workplace with the expectation that they will comply with required testing.”

“Employees will be given a final opportunity to comply with the city’s mandatory vaccination policy prior to a final notice of discipline being served to them.”

“I'm proud of city staff who have worked tirelessly during the pandemic to provide ongoing essential services as our community depends on us,” said City Manager Jennifer Maguire. “The fully implemented mandated vaccination policy will continue to support this key goal and will also help ensure our community’s and employees’ safety.”

Employees who have received one dose of a COVID vaccine by today or during the disciplinary process will be given "reasonable time" to receive their second dose and will not be subject to disciplinary action unless they fail to receive their second dose, according to the policy.

“The city will also consider further action for those that remain unvaccinated after Dec. 31, which may include disciplinary action up to, and including termination,” the city said in today’s statement.

Employees who have submitted requests for religious and medical exemptions are being evaluated on a case-by-case basis, and qualified employees are able to submit negative COVID-19 test results twice a week.

Testing can be done on employees off-work hours or using their available leave balances.Failure to provide the test results twice a week will result in the employee being placed on unpaid leave until they submit negative test results.



Three decades of journalism experience, as a writer and editor with Gannett, Knight-Ridder and Lee newspapers, as a business journal editor and publisher and as a weekly newspaper editor in Scotts Valley and Gilroy; with the Weeklys group since 2017. Recipient of several first-place writing and editing awards, California News Publishers Association.


  1. The CDC & State Public Health officials need to ‘Follow The Science’ and take Natural Immunity into account and the NON-Severity of so-called “breakthrough” infections.

    “Lasting Immunity found after Recovery from COVID-19″ (NIH RESEARCH MATTERS)
    ….researchers found durable immune responses in the majority of people studied. Antibodies against the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2, which the virus uses to get inside cells, were found in 98% of participants one month after symptom onset. … levels remained fairly stable over time, declining only modestly at 6 to 8 months after infection.”

    The CDC tracker shows 44 million ‘cases’ recorded for COVID – many prior to vaccination availability.
    Many of these were frontline “Essential” workers that, along with over 97% (WebMD estimates the overall COVID-19 Recovery Rate is 97% to 99.75%)
    of those recovered from COVID,
    now have some form of Natural Immunity.

    The largest study (over 700,000 samples – Israel) of COVID Vaccinated and Un-Vaccinated shows:

    “Previous COVID Prevents Delta Infection Better Than Pfizer Shot”

    “People who recovered from a case of COVID during one of the earlier waves of the pandemic appear to have a LOWER Risk of contracting the delta variant than those who got 2 doses of the vaccine from Pfizer Inc. or BioNTech SE.”

    “…the CDC continues to discount the protection of natural immunity.
    They only do it for SARS-CoV-2.
    They acknowledge natural immunity for measles, chickenpox, and many other viruses, but they are so myopic right now in trying to encourage vaccination that they are truly actually not following the science.”

    There are 14 studies that show that natural immunity is effective, it’s durable, and it’s going strong,” …
    “And yet there’s been this inexplicable denial of it” by the CDC and NIH.
    Dr. Marty Makary M.D., M.P.H., professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Bloomberg School of Public Health

    Regarding booster shots – which may be needed for groups that are at High Risk.

    “…the majority of doctors in the United States were perplexed at the broad recommendation that they announce they’re (CDC) going to make in over a month about Boosters for Everybody because the data right now shows that you get mild symptoms,
    that is common cold symptoms and that is increasing over time after vaccination.
    Interestingly, not with Natural Immunity by the way.

    But there is NO Evidence that you get hospitalized or have an increased risk of dying or severe illness over time.
    That (original) immunity may still be solid.”

  2. I think what the other guy here was trying to convey was that we learned out of the Israel study was that natural immunity is 27 times better than the vaccine. Of course, zero medical professionals in the USA will accept this fact.

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