The Governor’s recent order that all employees of executive cabinet agencies, as well as contractors for those agencies, will be required to be fully vaccinated by October 18, 2021. Fully vaccinated means an individual must be at least two weeks past the last dose of the COVID-19 vaccine regimen by that date. A copy of the order is attached (Proclamation 21-14.1)
WDVA contractor employees or representatives providing onsite services within WDVA owned or leased facilities or grounds will be required to be fully vaccinated by October 18, 2021. After reviewing your contract or nature of the services you provide to WDVA, we have determined you may be subject to the vaccination requirement. In accordance with the proclamation 21-14.1, WDVA has elected for contractor employers to be responsible for meeting the requirements for its employees and representatives. You will also be required to sign a form that you will comply with the requirements within the Governor’s order. We are requesting the attached Contractor Attestation Form be returned to the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org no later than October 4, 2021.
A list of some questions and answers are below. If you have additional questions, please go to the Washington State Department of Enterprise Contractor COVID-19 Information page at COVID-19 Information | Department of Enterprise Services (wa.gov) or Governor’s website at Vaccine Mandate Frequently Asked Questions | Governor Jay Inslee (wa.gov) or contact Abigail Watson, WDVA Contracts Specialist, at Abigail.Watson@dva.wa.gov or (360) 725-2207.
Required dates to begin COVID-19 Vaccination to meet the October 18 deadline:
- What WDVA contractors are subject to the Governor’s order
All contractors working onsite at executive cabinet agencies of the state of Washington (includes WDVA) if the work is required to be performed in person and on site, regardless of frequency, whether other workers are present, or any contingent nature of that requirement, including indoor or outdoor worksites.
- What vaccines must a contractor receive to be compliant with the proclamation?
Contractors may choose any of the three FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccines, manufactured by Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson, respectively.
- What if someone refuses to get vaccinated?
All contractors and employees/representatives of that contractor performing onsite work on WDVA owned or leased premises must be fully vaccinated by October 18, 2021. Contractors who are not fully vaccinated by this time will no longer be qualified to fulfill the terms of their contract and the contract will be subject to termination .
- Will I be required to provide proof of vaccination to WDVA?
WDVA has elected to require all contractor employers to perform the vaccine verification for all its employees or representatives who may perform work on WDVA premises. The contractor employer must sign a declaration, under the penalty of perjury, that it will comply with the order. WDVA does, however, reserve the right to investigate or inquire into a contractor’s compliance with the order and may request proof of vaccination in the future.
- What will be required of contract staffing agencies that provide nurses, nursing assistants, and other staff for the residents or contractors that provide physician or other medical services in our skilled nursing facilities?
Contract agencies and those providing physician or other medical services in our skilled nursing homes are required to provide a list of employees that are authorized to work in our facilities in compliance with the Governor’s order to each WDVA home by October 18, 2021. The list will need to be continually updated as additional staff are available that meet the requirement. Contract agency staff not on the list are unauthorized to work at any WDVA facility. As stated in Question 4, WDVA reserves the right to investigate and inquire into contractor compliance. This includes requesting proof of vaccination of any of its staff.
- What if I do not provide the declaration that I will comply with the order by October 18, 2021?
Contractors who have not signed the declaration by will be out of compliance with Governor’s order and will be subject to immediate contract terminations.
- If a contractor has previously been infected with COVID-19, and can show that they have the antibodies against the virus, are they exempt from the vaccine requirement?
- The Proclamation mentions accommodation for medical and religious reasons. If one of my employees or representatives meets the state criteria for an accommodation, will they be able to work onsite at a WDVA facility?
No. If you have an employee or representative that meets the criteria for accommodation, part of that accommodation you as the employer grant will be to have that person work at locations not subject to the Governor’s order.
- What if an unvaccinated contractor contracts COVID-19 and is recommended to wait 90 days before receiving the COVID-19 vaccine? Would they still have to meet the October 18, 2021, deadline?
If an individual is advised by their medical provider that they should not get the vaccine within a particular timeframe, and following that recommendation would cause the individual to miss the October 18, 2021, deadline, the individual. However, they would need to become fully vaccinated as soon as the waiting period ends.
Terry Westhoff, Chief Financial Officer
Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs
1102 Quince Street SE
PO Box 41150-1150
Olympia WA 98504