Updated: 29 November 2021
At Volunteering Victoria, we are all keenly aware that the vaccination mandate that came into effect on October 15th raises a lot of questions and challenges for your organisations, employees and volunteers.
It is the view of Volunteering Victoria that vaccinating our community against COVID-19 is the most obvious and proven way out of the restrictions and lockdowns we have suffered through for many months. With the State Government announcing a directive mandating the vaccination of essential volunteer workers, we want to state our support for this announcement.
For non-mandated volunteer settings, it remains your personal/organisation’s decision to vaccinate or not (until a government health or legislative directive states otherwise). We encourage all individuals and organisations to strongly consider their safety and that of their wider workforce (including volunteers), clients and stakeholders.
Our advice to organisations
Our advice to organisations is to be clear and transparent when it comes to assessing risk and deciding what is best for your organisation, visitors and/or clients with whom you interact and your volunteers. Wherever possible, we recommend involving them in the process.
Non-mandated vaccine settings
Volunteering Australia, with input from Volunteering Victoria, have put this Position Paper together in respect to vaccinations:
- Volunteers in Aged Care and COVID-19 Vaccinations: Position Statement
- COVID-19 Position Paper No.3: Volunteering, Vaccinations and Being COVIDSafe
Resources to assess risk
Volunteer involving organisations have a duty of care to ensure the health and safety of their volunteers as well as other stakeholders (e.g. staff, clients and customers). Relevant legislation includes The Victorian Wrongs Act (1958), and the Victorian Occupational Health and Safety Act (2004). View our Health and Safety guide here.
- Dealing with volunteers during COVID-19
- Mandatory vaccinations – inherent requirement or lawful and reasonable direction?
- Vaccination requirements and anti-discrimination laws
- Volunteer-involving organisations can apply to Justice Connect for 1:1 legal help if they have more complex issues. Justice Connect have set up a specific (internal) triage system for vaccine inquiries – some queries are referred to Justice Connect lawyers to answer, while others may be referred forward.