When Will Construction Workers Get the Covid-19 Vaccine?
With the Covid-19 now getting rolled out across the planet, all eyes are turning to the dates when different sectors of the community can expect to receive this vital jab.
Phase 3 in the US
American authorities have classed people in the construction industry as “other essential workers”, meaning that they come in after “frontline essential workers” in terms of priority. Because of this classification, they can expect to receive the vaccine in the third phase of the rollout schedule.
This information comes from a document realised by the country’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Their Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has stated that the third phase will include those people who work in sectors that are “important to the functioning of society”.
The people in this stage also have a higher risk of exposure to the virus and haven’t been covered by either of the first two phases of the rollout. Also included in this definition are the likes of food service, finance, transportation and media workers.
The latest news on this phase is that it could begin as early as February, if everything goes well before then. There is expected to be no difference made between construction workers based on the projects they are working on or the exact trade that they carry out.
It Could Be Autumn in the UK
All four nations in the UK are following the same schedule for the Covid-19 vaccination. This means that they have started with older people, those who are particularly vulnerable and those who work in the health and social care sectors.
At the end of February, the next most vulnerable group should begin to receive their first dose. Unlike in the US, there are very few job categories to take into account. Instead, it is almost solely aimed at people aged 50 and upwards, as well as younger people with underlying health conditions.
The only other priorities in the phase for adults under 50 are for teachers, military personnel, supermarket workers and transport. There have been calls for this group to be increased more in line with the American model while it has been suggested the police officers and firefighters may be moved into this group.
After that, the rest of the adult population may have to wait until autumn to receive the vaccine. Therefore, a construction worker under the age of 50 could still have six months or more to wait for it to be their turn.
Naturally, construction workers need to stick to the enhanced health and safety instructions in force in the meantime, while abiding by the use of traditional safety measures like hard hats and a step unit where necessary.
An online petition on the Government and Parliament site aims to gather enough signatures to get construction workers classed as essential workers in terms of the vaccine. However, at the moment the total falls well short of what is needed for politicians to respond to it or debate it.