University of Maine System responds to Governor Mills’ expansion of vaccination eligibility with commitment to become Maine’s most vaccinated workforce through voluntary participation
Orono, Maine — The University of Maine System is responding to the expanded eligibility announced by Governor Janet Mills with a commitment to become Maine’s most vaccinated workforce through voluntary employee participation in the state’s inoculation campaign.
“Job number one between now and July is to make sure that every member of our workforce who wants a vaccine has the chance to participate when they become eligible,” said Chancellor Dannel Malloy.
“Throughout the pandemic, we have put student and community safety first,” continued Malloy. “The next step in our Together for Maine public health campaign is to make sure our employees and their families get vaccinated when it is their turn.”
Approximately 25% of the University of Maine System’s 4,635 employees are over the age of 60 and will be eligible for a vaccination starting next week, according to the eligibility expansion announced by Governor Mills. Nearly three-quarters of faculty and staff (3,357, 72.4%) will be eligible by commencement on May 8.
University leaders will be working with bargaining unit partners and supervisors to reach accommodations for vaccination participation in keeping with the pledge of support for employees made in the early days of the pandemic.
University of Maine President Joan Ferrini-Mundy chairs the UMS Vaccination Planning and Partnership Task Force established by the Chancellor to track developments with the vaccine and contribute to Maine’s vaccination campaign. The University of Maine System strongly encourages vaccination. UMS is not requiring vaccinations at least during the period when the vaccine remains in Emergency Use Authorization status by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“As educators and public servants, we know that the vaccines are safe and important to public health,” said President Ferrini-Mundy. “We are going to lead by example, encourage all our colleagues and their family members to participate when it’s their turn, and be the most vaccinated workforce in Maine when we welcome our students back in the fall.”