Vatican Declares Employees Must Receive Coronavirus Vaccine or Risk Losing Their Jobs

Pope Francis celebrates Mass on Christmas Eve at St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican on December 24, 2020. (VINCENZO PINTO/AP)

The Vatican has taken a hard line against employees who refuse to be vaccinated for COVID-19, warning they risk losing their jobs.

According to a decree by Cardinal Giuseppe Bertello, whose role as President of the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State makes him the territory’s top administrator, employees who refuse the vaccine “without proven health reasons” face penalties that can include “the interruption of the work relationship.”

Vatican City is the world’s smallest independent state, sitting right in the heart of Rome. It employs several thousand people, most of whom actually live outside the walled 100-acre territory and inside Italy proper.

Those who do reside inside the Vatican’s walls tend to be elderly, such as retired Pope Benedict XVI, 93, and Pope Francis, 84. The pontiff was vaccinated for COVID-19 last month and has been a big supporter of inoculation in the global fight against the coronavirus.

“It is an ethical choice because you are gambling with your health, with your life, but you are also gambling with the lives of others,” Francis told an Italian TV station last month.

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SOURCE: CBS News, Chris Livesay

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