Gov. Gavin Newsom announced state employees and healthcare workers will now have to show proof of vaccination or begin weekly COVID-19 testing, starting August 2.
During a Monday briefing, Newsom said there are about 246,000 state employees who should “lead by example” as the order will be phased in and full compliance expected by August 23.
“We are now asking for that verification, no longer requiring, or rather encouraging self-attestation. This is a requirement to prove you’ve been vaccinated and if you have not, you will be tested,” Newsom said Monday. “Our projections are sobering… if we continue down this path, our projections will put additional pressure… on systems throughout the state.”
Healthcare companies such as Kaiser Permanente and other private sector clinics have partnered with the state to comply with the vaccination requirement that will also extend to high-risk congregate settings such as senior residential facilities, homeless shelters and jails.
Newsom added that California saw a 16% increase in first-dose vaccinations last week, amounting to about 255,000 COVID-19 vaccinations. An increase also occurred in some of the state zip codes that the state has deemed most at-risk of contracting COVID-19.
Newsom also called out multiple politically conservative leaders and media members for “perpetuating misinformation,” about the COVID-19 vaccines and creating hesitation.
“We’re exhausted by the Ron Johnsons and the Tucker Carlsons and Marjorie Taylor-Greenes, we’re exhausted by the right-wing echo chamber who has been perpetuating misinformation around the vaccine and its efficacy and safety,” Newsom added. “I want to applaud, particularly Republican leaders who have had the courage to call that out and I hope more and more will do the same.”