Update 29 October 2021

29 October 2021

Tēnā koutou i tēnei ahiahi

As more cases are emerging around the country, it is a timely reminder of the need to be vigilant and get tested if you’re showing any symptoms at all. There is a lot for us to process about the mandates and restrictions.  These can be trying and uncertain times. We appreciate that everyone has different concerns and views on the current situation. At the end of the day though, all of us want everyone to feel safe, support our loved ones, and support the most vulnerable in our community.

At 11.59pm on Monday 25 October the COVID-19 Public Health Response Order for Mandatory Vaccinations for Education came into effect.

The Ministry of Education are operationalising the mandate and we are still waiting for clarification on some details that are specific to Playcentre but we can confirm the following.

COVID-19 Required Vaccination Order

All employed, contracted, and volunteer workers must have their:

(1)   first COVID-19 vaccination on or before 15 November 2021; and

(2)   second vaccination by 1 January 2022.

The requirement is for all people who may come into contact with children onsite at early learning services to be vaccinated. This includes:

  • all workers, whether they are paid; volunteers, or students on placement, directly employed or contracted through a third party.

We would like to apologise and clear up any confusion that has arisen about the vaccination requirement dates. The original information supplied used the word ‘encouraged’ but it has now been confirmed that the first vaccination is ‘required’ on or before the 15 November to continue to attend Playcentre.

Next week we will be releasing further details regarding requesting your vaccination status. This information will be collected at a national level.

Do the vaccination requirements apply to excursions or education in similar settings?
 
Staff members, volunteers and contractors who are involved in excursions and may have contact with children in the course of carrying out their work are required to be vaccinated. 

Can a staff member or volunteer choose not to be vaccinated, but to undergo regular testing instead?  
 
No, all staff members or volunteers who do work covered by the Public Health Order must have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by 15 November 2021.

What if a staff member or volunteer initially refused to get vaccinated, but changes their mind before 1 January 2022?
 
A staff member or volunteer who gets their first vaccination after 15 November can return to Playcentre. They must still receive their second vaccination on or before 1 January 2022.  Please remember that there needs to be at least three weeks between vaccinations.

What does fully vaccinated mean?

Fully vaccinated means the person has received two doses of the Pfizer vaccine.
The Public Health Order also allows for some alternative vaccinations to reflect that some people may have been vaccinated overseas.

Our Frequently Asked Question bank has been updated to reflect the above. As more information comes to hand we will be updating these.

If you have a question or would like clarity on a specific point, please feed this through the COVID-19 feedback form available here:

Vaccination is a simple, safe, and effective way of protecting you against harmful diseases, before you come into contact with them. It uses your body’s natural defences to build resistance to specific infections and makes your immune system stronger.

Without vaccines, we’re at risk of serious illness, disability or even death from diseases like the measles, meningitis, pneumonia, tetanus and polio – and now COVID-19.

Here are a few reasons why vaccinations are good – for everyone:

  • they can prevent us from getting sick
  • they are safe
  • they can save lives
  • they will not cause a disease they are designed to prevent
  • they can help protect the community
  • prevention is much better than treatment.

In a nutshell, by getting vaccinated, we are protecting ourselves, our loved ones and those around us.

For further information click here

Please continue to show manaakitanga and patience to your fellow villagers. Playcentre has been, currently is, and will be a village to future tamariki and whānau. It has endured 80 years of changes.

We would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank all of our Centres, Centre Advisors, Centre Based Employees, Regional Team and National Team as we navigate through these unprecedented times together.