A man working with vulnerable elderly residents at an aged care home is refusing to get vaccinated against Covid, despite a spike in cases in Sydney and a relentlessly-growing list of exposure sites spreading across the city.
Jabs are being made mandatory for everyone working in aged care and hotel quarantine settings, with the majority of Australia’s coronavirus deaths being in nursing homes.
Out of 35 new cases in New South Wales on Monday, two were residents at SummitCare aged care home in Baulkham Hills, taking the cluster to five.
But one aged care worker, known only as Drew, said he and many others in the industry are fiercely opposed to the move, and says he feels ‘coerced’ by the federal government’s new policy.
Health chiefs have continuously explained that unless the vaccination rate picks up, particularly among those working with vulnerable Australians, continued lockdowns and border closures may be unavoidable.
As Sydney’s latest lockdown rolls into it 12th day, the city’s growing Covid exposure list grew yet again to include multiple busy supermarkets and restaurants.
‘I’m aware of many of my colleagues who are now fearful of getting the vaccine and feel coerced and pressured that if they don’t, they will be unemployed,’ the anonymous aged care worker told A Current Affair on Monday night.
‘There are many, many people like that’.
Drew has worked in the aged care industry for more than 30 years and is now worried he might lose his job, claiming he’s ‘not an anti-vaxxer’ and has received the flu vaccine before.