Federal Research Related Vaccine Requirement Notice to UA Employees

From: David Bishko, Acting UA Chief Human Resources Officer

Subject: COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement Notice 

As announced by President Pitney, University of Alaska is instituting a COVID-19 vaccination requirement for a number of university employees, most of them at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. This requirement is necessary to comply with federal regulations. Following is a list of employees, including student employees and Fairbanks-based System Office employees, who will be required to be fully vaccinated by December 8, 2021:

  • Employees based on UAF’s Troth Yeddha’ (Fairbanks) campus, regardless of university affiliation and remote work status;
  • Employees based in UAF research units outside Fairbanks (including Seward Marine Center, Kodiak Seafood and Marine Science Center, HAARP, Poker Flat, Lena Point, and Toolik Field Station); and
  • Employees, regardless of their work location, paid by or directly working on impacted UAF federal contracts.

UA Human Resources will send follow-up information to the affected employees. All UA employees received this notice because we are still in the process of identifying all of the individual employees who may be affected. If you are in one of the categories listed above, you should assume you will be required to be vaccinated. 

What do affected employees need to do now?

If you are already fully vaccinated or have an approved exemption form, you don’t need to do anything right now. Information on how to share your documentation will be available within two weeks.

If you are not fully vaccinated, you should get vaccinated as soon as possible. In order to be considered fully vaccinated by December 8, you need to:

  • Receive your dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine no later than November 24
  • Receive the first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine by November 12 and the second dose according to the vaccination provider guidelines: three weeks afterward for Pfizer and four weeks afterward for Moderna. While this schedule may miss the December 8 deadline, it will be recognized to meet the intent of the requirement. 

COVID Admin Leave (earnings code 467) can be used for time needed to receive the vaccine. 

If you plan to seek a medical or religious exemption, you can complete the medical or religious exemption form. Information on how to submit the form will be available in two weeks. The university reserves the right to impose weekly COVID-19 testing requirements for employees who are granted an exemption. 

How will affected employees submit proof of vaccination or a request for exemption?

All affected employees will have several options to choose from when reporting documentation of their vaccination status. Details on the validation process will be available by November 15. The following documentation is acceptable:

  • A copy of the record of immunization from a health care provider or pharmacy
  • Your COVID-19 vaccination record card (or a copy)

If you want to request a medical or religious exemption, you will upload your completed request form. If you have submitted a request for a medical or religious exemption, the process will not be complete until you receive verification of approval. 

What will happen if affected employees don’t provide proof of vaccination or exemption?

For employees in the groups listed at the top of this message, vaccination is required as a condition of your employment unless you have a medical or religious exemption. 

Who should you contact if you have questions?

We know many of you have questions, and we are working diligently to provide additional guidance. More information will be shared as soon as it becomes available. You can also find more information on the UA COVID-19 vaccination page. If you have questions, please contact UA Human Resources at ua-hr@alaska.edu, 907-450-8200.