Today, the University of Illinois System announced that all faculty and staff will be required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by the beginning of the Fall 2021 semester. This is welcome news as we work to do all we can to prioritize the health and safety for every member of our university community. To be clear, if you are able to be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus, our position is that you should pursue vaccination if you have not already done so.
UIS will release our university-specific policy for employees early next week. Our leadership team has spent the past several weeks listening and considering the best way forward. We are working to finalize a plan that aligns with our health and safety requirements and our operational needs.
The employee policy issued next week will outline what is expected of each employee. While the message will be clear to seek vaccination, there will be sensible ways that employees may engage the university regarding possible exemptions to this requirement. In the meantime, if you are not yet vaccinated against COVID-19 and are able to do so, please schedule an appointment to receive the vaccine so you are fully vaccinated as close to the start of the Fall 2020 semester as possible.
United in Safety,
Karen M. Whitney, PhD
University of Illinois Springfield