Colorado governor not pursuing COVID-19 vaccine mandate for state employees

Colorado Governor Jared Polis gets his first COVID-19 vaccine shot from medical assistant, Staci Ramirez at the Salud Family Health Center in Commerce City January 30, 2021.
Photo by Andy Cross / The Denver Post

DENVER — Gov. Jared Polis is not considering a coronavirus vaccine mandate for Colorado’s roughly 30,000 state employees after California’s governor and New York City’s mayor announced Monday, July 26, that they will pursue that route to combat rising cases of the delta variant.

“The state is working very hard to educate Coloradans on how safe and effective the vaccine is. We have worked to ensure the vaccine is free, convenient and accessible to all. We also just announced a new round of incentives that we hope will increase the number of Coloradans getting the vaccine,” Conor Cahill, a spokesman for Polis, said in a written statement. “These efforts remain the focus of the state’s COVID response.”

Cases are rising across the U.S. and in Colorado as the delta variant, which is far more contagious than other strains of the disease, spreads. The variant was first detected in India.

Health officials have blamed unvaccinated people for the trend, urging them to get inoculated as soon as possible. More than 70% of Colorado adults have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, but some counties are lagging well behind that percentage.

“Having more than 70% of Colorado adults vaccinated is an important milestone, but it’s not enough,” Polis said recently on social media.

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