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City of Germantown backs off COVID-19 vaccinations requirement for employees

Tuesday the City of Germantown announced it would require city employees to be vaccinated. Thursday, the Memphis suburb backed off.

GERMANTOWN, Tenn. — UPDATE: 8/5/2021:
Two days after announcing that its city employees would be required to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, Germantown backed off that requirement.

According to the Daily Memphian, a memo was sent to fire personnel that explained the reversal.


Effective immediately, no vaccination could mean no job for City of Germantown employees. All employees have until Labor Day to get their final dose of the shot or risk termination.

Germantown now leads the way as the first Mid-South municipality to require its employees to require documented proof of vaccination. Employees were made aware this week of the new policy. 

Germantown City Administrator Patrick Lawton released a statement saying, "We are all public servants, and our collective efforts are vital to the health and well-being of the people we serve, the residents of Germantown. If one of our departments is understaffed due to COVID, we cannot deliver the services our residents expect and deserve."

To ensure the safety of the City of Germantown employees and residents, Lawton says the following terms are now in effect:

RELATED: Germantown is not horsing around when it comes to fighting COVID-19

  • Employees must stay home when sick (this is unchanged).
  • Effective immediately, all employees that are not fully vaccinated are required to wear a mask at all times while on City property or while performing City business. They will also be subject to weekly testing for COVID-19.  
  • Employees have until Labor Day to finish getting fully vaccinated (and copies of vaccination cards submitted to HR). Failure to meet this vaccination deadline may result in being placed on administrative leave and even termination. Employees requiring religious or medical accommodations will need to submit appropriate documentation to HR for consideration. 
  • Employees with not vaccinated will be suspended from City related travel immediately.
  • New hires and candidates will be given adequate window of time to submit vaccine proof.

Lawton says it's going to take cooperation to beat COVID in Germantown and thanked all employees for their teamwork.