The Port of Seattle announced this week that it will require its 2,200 employees to become vaccinated by Nov. 15, 2021, or risk being terminated.
The announcement follows similar requirements in federal, state, and local governments nationally and in Washington State, including at the City of Burien. The science shows that the vaccine prevents the spread of COVID and significantly lowers your chance of a being hospitalized or dying from COVID.
“Right now we are not seeing the level of vaccinations that will curb the spread of the disease and mitigate its deadly impacts,” said Steve Metruck, Port of Seattle Executive Director. “We are committed to taking every step necessary to stop the spread of COVID. We owe it to ourselves, our families, the most vulnerable who cannot receive the vaccine, and our community.”
The Port of Seattle is a major economic development engine for the region and state. Port activities are responsible for billions of dollars in revenue and tens of thousands of family-wage jobs across aviation, maritime, and transportation sectors. Safely operating our gateways is critical to our equitable recovery strategy.
King County public health data shows that not fully vaccinated people are 50 times more likely to be hospitalized for COVID and 30 times more likely to die of a COVID-related illness. People not fully vaccinated are seven times more likely to test positive for COVID.
Port employees have access to all three major vaccinations, and Port human resources representatives will verify the vaccination status of all employees with an in-person validation at Port worksites. Limited exemptions to the condition of employment will be considered for religious or medical reasons, while impacts for represented groups will be bargained.