Research Shows Almost Two Thirds of Unvaccinated Employees Will Refuse the COVID-19 Vaccine

Research Shows Almost Two Thirds of Unvaccinated Employees Will Refuse the COVID-19 Vaccine

Some companies aren’t being equitable when it comes to their employees taking time off to get their shot.

A new survey reveals that almost two thirds (64 percent) of unvaccinated employees in North America will refuse the COVID-19 vaccine. The research also found that just under half (45 percent) of respondents stated their company is not requiring employees to be vaccinated. Furthermore, half of employees do not receive paid leave for the vaccine, and of that group, 70 percent receive no leave at all.

In addition, the survey of more than 1,000 part and full-time employees, HR managers and business owners at small or medium-sized businesses found that approximately half of employees do not receive paid leave for the vaccine, and of that group, 70 percent receive no leave at all for the vaccine.

Zenefits conducted a study into how small business employees feel about returning to work and the vaccine following the news that major companies, like PwC and IMB, are returning employees back to work later this year with a hybrid model.

“What we found most interesting was the views on vaccines, as it’s clear that it's a divided topic. Here at Zenefits we hope that everyone is given all the information they need to make an informed decision on the vaccine, and given the opportunity to have it, should they wish, Nadene Evans of Zenefits said. We hope that this survey helps people understand better other people's feelings around returning to work, and it's okay to feel uneasy, or excited, or both!”

Key findings from the study:

• 45 percent of respondents stated their company does not require employees to be vaccinated

• 64 percent of the unvaccinated population refuses to get it

• 52 percent of employees have been asked to limit discussion around the vaccine

• 50 percent of companies do not receive paid time off for the vaccine, and a majority of those (70 percent), do not receive unpaid leave to get their shot

• 67 percent of companies are preparing to return to the office

• 52 percent of employees are comfortable working in the office, even if employees aren’t vaccinated

When the respondents who said they will refuse to take the shot were asked why, the most popular answer was ‘unintended side effects’ (44 percent), followed by ‘opposition to vaccination’ (24 percent) and ‘medical exception’ (nine percent).

When looking further into returning to the office, the majority (67 percent) of employees stated that their company is preparing for them to go back. 40 percent of businesses surveyed are planning to bring all employees back with no capacity limit. Additionally, just five percent of companies are planning on a permanent hybrid environment, with a third (36 percent) of employees wanting to go to the office every day, compared to a quarter (24 percent) of employees who would like to work from home all of the time.

“Since well-known companies such as PWC announced their future ways of working, we were really intrigued to find out what the rest of America’s employees and employers were feeling about going back to the office, Evans said. We are always hearing about what will be the ‘new normal’ and how people are changing everything for good, however, it seems that this is less common than we think.”

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