Stanford to require vaccines for employees

Oct. 6, 2021, 10:49 p.m.

Stanford will require all employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Dec. 8, it announced in a Wednesday email to the campus community. The policy maintains an exception for employees with religious or medical accommodations.

The change in policy follows an executive order announced by President Biden on Sept. 9 that requires all employees of federal contractors to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19. Due to Stanford’s many federal contracts, Biden’s executive order applies to almost every Stanford employee, according to the email, which was signed by Provost Persis Drell, medical school dean Lloyd Minor and Associate Vice Provost for Environmental Health and Safety Russell Furr.

Employees who have already submitted proof of their vaccination status are not affected by the new policy. However, the University’s previous “additional allowance for those who chose not to get vaccinated for any reason” will no longer be valid. All Stanford faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars without medical and religious exemptions now need to be fully vaccinated by Dec. 8. 

The requirement applies to employees who work on campus as well as University employees working remotely in the United States and applicable subcontractors. Individuals who fail to comply with the vaccine mandate by Dec. 8 and are not granted medical or religious accommodations will no longer be allowed to perform work for the University. Drell, Minor and Furr wrote that they will share more information on requesting accommodations during the week of Oct. 18.

They wrote that for employees that need to be vaccinated, “the process needs to begin well in advance for someone to be fully vaccinated and provide proof of vaccination on Health Check by Dec. 8.” 

The University provided a timeframe to meet this deadline based on each vaccine manufacturer: the first dose of the Moderna vaccine must be administered by Oct. 27 and the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine by Nov. 3. The second dose of Moderna and Pfizer, or a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, must be administered by Nov. 24 in order for employees to meet the deadline.  

Drell, Minor and Furr reminded employees that the University has extended “COVID Flex Hours” through Dec. 17. They wrote that Flex Hours, an interim policy that provides eighty hours of paid leave to employees who need to address COVID-19 related needs, “may be used for vaccinations and common side effects.” 

“Thank you for your understanding, flexibility and resolve in adjusting to COVID protocols. Together, we can maintain our momentum and keep one another as safe as possible,” Drell, Minor and Furr wrote.

Oriana Riley ’25 is a News Managing Editor at The Daily. Every once in a while, she drops an iconic Campus Life article. Outside of The Daily, Oriana enjoys running a lot of miles and eating a lot of food. Contact Oriana at news ‘at’

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