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No hazard leave for unvaccinated Tulsa city employees

July 28, 2021 GMT

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — City employees in Tulsa who are unvaccinated for the coronavirus will not receive hazard leave if they contract the illness, Mayor G.T Bynum said.

Hazard leave is paid leave that is not counted against sick days or vacation days, city spokesperson Michelle Brooks Wednesday. Affected unvaccinated employees could use sick days or vacation if they become ill with the virus.

Ascension St. John Hospital in Tulsa announced its employees would be required to become vaccinated by Nov. 12, with exemptions possible for medical or religious regions.

“Tens of thousands of Ascension associates have already been vaccinated with the available vaccines, as have millions of people across the country and the world,” Ascension said in a statement. “But we must do more to overcome this pandemic as we provide safe environments for those we serve.

Ascension joins OU Health, Mercy and SSM Health as hospitals in the state requiring employee vaccinations.

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There were 1,474 newly reported virus cases in the state Wednesday, according to the Oklahoma State Department of Health. The seven-day rolling average of new cases in the state has increased from 338.4 daily on July 12 to 1,197.1 on Monday, according to Johns Hopkins University research data.