Public/Global Health

Vatican ordering all employees to be vaccinated or tested

The Vatican will require all employees to show proof of a COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test, The Washington Post reported.

The mandate will take effect on Oct. 1, and anyone without the required documentation will be considered "unjustly absent" and will not be paid their salary, according to The Post.

This announcement comes as some people pursue vaccination exemptions on religious grounds. The Vatican will not provide any exemptions to its mandate at this time; however, the Secretariat of State will be assessing possible exemptions alongside the Vatican's health department, the Post reported.

Pope Francis, who is vaccinated himself, has repeatedly encouraged vaccination including referring to vaccines as "an act of love" in an advertisement last month.

"Being vaccinated with vaccines authorized by the competent authorities is an act of love. And contributing to ensure the majority of people are vaccinated is an act of love," the 84-year-old pope said in the video ad campaign. "Vaccination is a simple but profound way of promoting the common good and caring for each other, especially the most vulnerable."

According to data from the Pew Research Center, 82 percent of Catholic adults in the U.S. said they were at least partially vaccinated as of August.

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