New Mexico State University Extends Vaccination Deadline, Employees Protest Over Requirement

United States North America COVID-19 Higher Education News by Erudera News Nov 12, 2021

New State Mexico University

Employees at New Mexico State University (NMSU) have initially been required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by December 8, 2021; however, the university has now decided to extend the deadline until January 4, 2022.

“The original deadline of Dec. 8, 2021, set by the federal guidance has been pushed back to Jan. 4, 2022, and the New Mexico State University system will extend its deadline in alignment with that federal extension,” the university has noted.

Following the decision, the university’s employees have gathered in the horseshoe in front of the Hadley Administration building to protest over the vaccine mandate, Erudera.com reports.

The NMSU nursing professor Sharon Davidson said that there shouldn’t be pressure on him as an employee to do something which he believes is against his religious views, just to keep his job position.

“I am not in a high-risk category according to statistics, I don’t believe that this is following the science, I don’t believe the university is considering all the science,” Davidson told KFOX14.

The university stated that all employees, including student employees, contract employees, and teleworking employees, as well as those who work from another state to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by the new deadline in order to be able to still work at the university.

It further stressed that those who do not comply with the vaccine mandate or who do not manage to receive religious or medical exemptions by the deadline will be subject to disciplinary actions, including the possible termination of contracts.

New Mexico State University has advised all employees who have not been vaccinated yet, to act quickly and complete the vaccine series by December 21 in order to be considered fully vaccinated by the January deadline.

The deadlines set by the university depending on the vaccine are as follows:

  • Moderna: first dose to be taken Nov. 23; second dose by Dec. 21
  • Pfizer: first dose by Nov. 30; second dose by Dec. 21
  • Johnson & Johnson: dose must be taken by Dec. 21

The change in policy does not apply to students who are not employees at the university.

In August, the university fired professor David Clements for his public declarations that he would not comply with any COVID-19 vaccine requirement.

Another university in New Mexico, the University of New Mexico announced that it will disenroll some 256 students who have failed to adhere to the vaccine mandate. The university has asked students to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or exemptions for medical or religious reasons.

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