The end of the COVID-19 Protection Framework and Government vaccination mandates
The Government has announced that as of Tuesday 13 September, the COVID-19 Protection Framework will be gone. Two weeks later, all Government vaccination mandates will also be removed.
The COVID-19 Protection Framework (more commonly known as the traffic light system) has been removed.
The Government is no longer requiring people to wear a mask, except in aged care facilities and healthcare settings such as hospitals, GPs and pharmacies. Some places (such as workplaces, special events, or marae) may still ask people to wear a mask, however this will be at their discretion and no longer a Government requirement.
Only those who actually test positive for COVID-19 are required to self-isolate for 7 days. Household contacts will be asked to undertake a daily RAT test, but provided it is negative, are able to leave the house as normal.
On 26 September, all Government vaccination mandates will be removed. From then, travelers arriving into New Zealand (including air crew) will no longer be required to be vaccinated or provide negative RAT tests on day 0/1 and 5/6. These measures will be encouraged only.
In terms of vaccination in the workforce, it will be at the employer’s discretion as to whether they continue to require their workers to be vaccinated. In light of this, we suggest employers revisit any previous health and safety risk assessments for requiring vaccination, and ensure any existing vaccination requirements still amount to a reasonable safeguard against COVID-19.
The removal of the Protection Framework and Government vaccination mandates may impact on the reasonableness of such measures.
Want to know more?
If you have any questions about what this means for your business, please contact our specialist Employment Team.
PDF version: here.