At MAPR, we recognize that we have a unique ability to support efforts to fight COVID-19 and prioritize the health and safety of our employees and the communities we serve. And more fundamentally, we think we have a responsibility to embody our mission, vision and values when it matters most.
That is why we’re giving our talented and hard-working employees the time and space they need to get inoculated so that we can all get back into the swing of things as quickly — and safely — as possible. A large percentage of our team will be getting their second vaccine shot on Monday, April 19. To incentivize our team members to get their shots, and to give them appropriate time to recover from any adverse effects, we are providing our team with time off to get their vaccines.
No, we are not mandating inoculation. But by offering our employees paid time off to get vaccinated (and deal with any unwelcome side effects), we are doing our part to stop the spread and proactively create the conditions that will enable us to safely meet and work together again. While working from home is a benefit all MAPR staffers will continue to enjoy, one of the most frequent things we hear from staff is, “we really want to be together in the office again.” Vaccines are helping to make that safely possible as soon as possible.
Making Vaccine Day a Company Holiday
Similar to the movement among leading companies last November to make Election Day a paid holiday, we want to incentivize every team member to get their vaccine. By removing the barriers, and promoting confidence in the decision to get vaccinated, we are letting every one of our employees know how much we value their health and safety (and those of their family members.
Since COVID-19 vaccines are now available to everyone in Colorado age 16 and older, we decided that rather than managing a deluge of employee requests to take time off in order to get vaccinated, we would make the day of the appointment and the days following appointments a companywide holiday.
Planning For the “Fauci Ouchie”
While most reactions to the COVID-19 vaccine are mild, there is a less-than-zero chance that a vaccine will be accompanied by a few unwanted side effects. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), our employees’ arms might feel sore after receiving a “Fauci ouchie,” and there might be some redness or swelling near the injection site. In addition, there’s also the potential that members of our staff could develop a headache, fever, muscle pain, chills, fatigue or nausea.
Furthermore, if our colleagues get a two-dose vaccine like those developed by Pfizer and Moderna, their symptoms may be more intense after the second shot than they were after the first. In fact, a recent study revealed that people who got the Moderna vaccine were more likely to say they experienced side effects than those who got the Pfizer shot. Anecdotally, we’re hearing that the side effects from the second Moderna vaccine in particular can be rough 24-36 hours after.
If you’re an employer considering offering your staff paid time off to get vaccinated, just be aware that the days following receiving the vaccine could be rough, so giving your employees an extra day or so off could be something you might want to think about as well.
So take the shot, wear a mask and continue to be safe in your interactions with others. We’re moving in the right direction, but the game isn’t over. Let’s stay in this — and continue to stop the spread.