Mike Hosking: No jab, no job a bigger issue than we realise?

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Tue, 4 May 2021, 4:20PM
(Photo / Getty)
(Photo / Getty)

Mike Hosking: No jab, no job a bigger issue than we realise?

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Tue, 4 May 2021, 4:20PM

I suppose it’s fairly easy to sack a customs worker for not getting a Covid jab, as they have here, and despite that they’ve already got the unions and advocates exercised. 

But this is a bigger issue, I suspect than many of us have given thought to.

63 percent of American employers, according to a poll this week, are going to be demanding their workers are jabbed.

63 percent is a lot, and it will grow, given there will be some who will be sitting and waiting to see how it unfolds, and if it unfolds towards vaccination, they’ll pile on.

Now, the legals.

Obviously it’s easier in a job ad to say “and you must be jabbed.”

It’s a lot harder to go to an employee of long standing and say “right give us your arm.”

That wasn’t part of your job description, you didn’t agree to it when you started.

And no other jab or inoculation is required, so why now?

A lawyer is having a field day with this.

Now, next step, you’re running a large company, 1000 or more people.

You know full well there will be around 10 %, for whatever reason, who wouldn’t get the jab. They may be suspicious, maybe anti-vaxxers, so what are you going to do with them?

And what if a bunch of them turn out to be key players?

What if your CFO doesn’t want one? Your head of human resources? Your star salesperson? What are you going to do? What is anyone going to do?

This is different to a travel passport; the ball automatically falls in the court of those missing out. If you’re not jabbed, you can’t buy a ticket, so that’s your problem.

Back in the workplace your key people are your problem.

And that’s before you get to the political minefield of something like that ending up with competitors or in the public domain.

How much thought has been given to this, if any?

63% is a solid majority and because it’s a solid majority it creates the weight of expectation.

And the weight of expectation often leads to tension.

In a free and open society, we like to think we largely make our own rules and dance to our own tune.

In Russia, of course, they tell you what to do.

But no jab no job, in a place like New Zealand, how big a powder- keg do you reckon that could become?