JOB APPLICANTS who are fully vaccinated against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) will be prioritized for hiring by the Davao City government starting Jan. 2022, based on an order issued by the mayor.  

Executive Order 45-A, which contains the priority hiring provision, is an updated version of the directive released last week requiring all current city workers to be vaccinated or face sanctions, including termination from the job.   

The Civil Service Commission and the Department of Interior and Local Government have yet to reply to a BusinessWorld request for comment on the legality of the vaccination mandate and whether other local governments can replicate the order.   

In March this year, the Department of Labor and Employment issued an advisory for the private sector, in line with laws on labor and vaccination, that a “no vaccine, no work policy shall not be allowed.”  

The Labor department, however, emphasized in the advisory that employers must “encourage” workers to get vaccinated against COVID-19 as part of occupational safety and healthy program.   

“The unreasonable refusal of some personnel to get vaccinated should not be allowed to bring to naught the cooperation of the majority, their effort to achieve herd immunity and their right to a healthy disease-free environment,” Davao Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio said over the city-run radio station.  

She cited that of the 20,000 city government workers — including permanent, temporary, and under contract — 12,000 have already been vaccinated without any death recorded.   

“If you are a person who feels aggrieved by the EO (executive order) because you are a city government personnel then you go to our City Legal Office,” the mayor said. — MSJ