Update on vaccine requirements

Dec. 10, 2021

On November 2, I sent a message implementing a vaccine requirement for employees based on UAF’s Troth Yeddha’ (Fairbanks) campus and at UAF research stations, irrespective of remote status, as well as those paid by or directly working on impacted UAF federal contracts, based on President Biden’s Executive Order requiring vaccination for federal contractors. Recently, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia issued a nation-wide injunction that temporarily prevents the federal government from enforcing the federal contractor vaccine mandate and the related Covid-19 guidance issued by the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force.

Because we have accepted modifications to implement the Executive Order that are now a part of our legally binding contracts, the vaccine policy remains in effect. However, based on this injunction, the university will not take action against employees who are not vaccinated by the January 18 deadline while we wait for further clarification from the courts.

The university will continue to work with employees to achieve compliance and strongly encourages those employees identified as subject to the federal contractor vaccine requirement to get vaccinated so that you will be in compliance with the January 18, 2022 deadline in the event the injunction is changed or lifted due to ongoing litigation. It is important to note that the deadlines and enforcement associated with vaccine requirements unaffected by the injunction remain in effect. This includes the UAF units that initiated a vaccine requirement through the UAF process. (https://sites.google.com/  alaska.edu/coronavirus/uaf/  uaf-policies).

Pat Pitney
University of Alaska Interim President