COVID 19 Vaccine Policy FAQ's

These FAQs relate solely to the COVID-19 Vaccine Policy. For general information about COVID-19, the COVID-19 vaccine, news and related resources, please visit the Student Health Center page here and select the corresponding buttons.


  1. How do I upload proof of vaccination?
    1. Employees should visit the Student Health Center Health e-Messenger to upload proof of COVID-19 vaccination.
  2. If I was vaccinated for COVID-19 through the Student Health Center, do I need to upload proof of vaccination?
    1. No, vaccination information has already been stored to Health e-Messenger.
  3. How do I request a medical/disability or religious exception or pregnancy deferral?
    1. Employees can visit the Slug Strong website for more information on how to request a medical/disability or religious exception, or pregnancy deferral. Information and the forms are also available in the Policy itself.
  4. How will I know if my employee exception or deferral request has been approved?
    1. Individuals will be notified by Sedgwick, (a third party vendor), that is reviewing the requests.
  5. What happens if my employee exception or deferral request is denied?
    1. The employee (and the local vaccine authority) will be notified by the University if their exception or deferral request is denied.

      The employee will then be expected to become fully vaccinated promptly AND continue to comply with all Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions (NPIs) until they become fully vaccinated (i.e., two weeks after receiving the 2nd shot from a two-dose series, in the case of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, or a single dose shot of the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine).

      Managers/supervisors (including department chairs and college provosts for academic appointees) will be provided on a weekly basis, a list of employees who are non-compliant with NPI requirements.

      Failure to comply with the vaccination requirement of the Policy or failure to abide by required NPIs will result in corrective action, up to and including termination.

  6. What are Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions (NPIs)?
    1. NPIs are methods, other than vaccines, to help prevent and/or slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus. NPIs include: wearing approved face coverings, completing the daily symptom checker, regular asymptomatic testing, avoiding crowded situations, staying home when sick, and avoiding close contact with sick individuals when possible.
  7. Are employees required to wear a mask while working on site?
    1. Currently, per local public health orders, face coverings are required regardless of vaccination status when accessing shared campus indoor spaces or inside campus shared vehicles (e.g., buses and  shuttles).
  8. If an employee is fully vaccinated, are they still required to complete the daily symptom checks?
    1. Cal/OSHA still requires daily symptom checks for all employees, including those who are fully vaccinated. Our current symptom check protocols can be found here.
  9. If an employee is working remotely 100% time, are they required to be vaccinated?
    1. Employees who work 100% remotely AND will not be physically present at a University location or at in-person activities representing a University program for work, research, or education/training related purposes, are not Covered Individuals under the Policy and are therefore not subject to the vaccine requirement.

      Employees who work remotely but are required to attend in-person activities representing a program on behalf of the University at any location are considered covered individuals and would be subject to the Vaccine Policy.

      However, remote work is based on the business need of the unit and can be rescinded at any time. If an employee is expected to return to the worksite, even only occasionally, they are expected to comply with the Policy prior to accessing a University location or program.

  10. What is the asymptomatic testing program?
    1. Asymptomatic COVID-19 testing at least every four (4) days, is required for all non-vaccinated employees (i.e., those who are non-compliant with the Policy, have a pending request for exception or deferral, or an approved exception or deferral). Mandatory testing is considered paid time and must be coordinated with your supervisor. Testing appointments can be scheduled through the Student Health Center here.

      Asymptomatic testing is not required for vaccinated employees. However, employees may voluntarily test up to twice a month. Because asymptomatic testing is voluntary, it is unpaid and must be done on an employee’s own time.

  11. What if employees do not comply with NPIs?
    1. Employees who do not comply with NPI protocols, including participating in required asymptomatic COVID-19 testing on-campus (if required); wearing masks while in indoor shared spaces; or completing the daily symptom check, are subject to discipline, up to and including dismissal, and they may be denied access to UC locations and programs.
  12. What if an employee refuses to be vaccinated and has not been approved for an exception or deferral?
    1. Employees will be provided with three (3) notices of non-compliance and an opportunity to become compliant with the Policy. Employees who remain non-compliant will be subject to progressive discipline. With the exception of Senate Faculty, who are disciplined in accordance with CAPM 002.015 (Faculty Conduct and the Administration of Discipline), employees will receive a Letter of Final Warning, Letter of Censure, or a  Memo of Expectations, as applicable. If the employee continues to be non-compliant with the Policy, they will be issued a Notice of Intent to Terminate.
  13. How will managers be notified if their employees are non-compliant with the policy?
    1. Managers, (including department chairs and college provosts, for academic appointees), will receive an email notification that their employee received a notice of non-compliance for each employee that they supervise who is not compliant with the Policy.
  14. As a manager, what action am I expected to take for employees that are non-compliant with the Policy?
    1. You need to direct your non-compliant employees to become compliant and abide by all NPIs while they become compliant. You should provide them with information and assistance, as appropriate. If you have further questions about your role in managing non-compliance, please contact SHRHelp@ucsc.edu.
  15. How will managers be notified if their employees are non-compliant with the asymptomatic testing requirement?
    1. Managers (including department chairs and college provosts, for academic appointees in their department) will receive weekly email notifications regarding their employee(s) who are not compliant with their required asymptomatic testing requirements.
  16. As a manager, what action am I expected to take for my employees that are non-compliant with the testing requirements?
    1. Managers (including department chairs and college provosts, for academic appointees in their department) should direct their employees who are not compliant with testing requirements to get tested as soon as possible to become compliant.  Managers can facilitate their employees required asymptomatic testing by building in time for the on-campus COVID-19 testing every four days. If managers have further questions about their role in managing non-compliance, they should contact SHRHelp@ucsc.edu.
  17. I was recently hired at UC Santa Cruz, do I need to comply with the vaccination policy?
    1. All covered individuals are required to be compliant with the Policy. As a newly hired employee, you must become compliant with the Policy by: (1) providing proof of vaccination or (2) obtaining an approved exception (medical/disability or sincerely held religious belief) or pregnancy deferral within eight (8) weeks of your hire date.
  18. I am obtaining the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine or booster through UC Santa Cruz or through another facility (primary care physician, public health clinic, vaccine fair, local pharmacy, etc.). Will I be paid for the time it takes to receive the vaccine?
    1. Yes. UC Santa Cruz will try to schedule your vaccine during your work time on campus. For non-exempt staff and academic employees, if your vaccine or booster is scheduled during your working time, you may use up to four (4) hours of Emergency Paid Sick Leave ‘21 (EPSL) (for staff) or Emergency Paid Sick Leave ‘21 (EPSL for Academics), or will be given up to four (4) hours of paid release time during your shift to obtain the vaccine or booster. Exempt employees who receive a vaccine or booster during their workday will be paid for a full day of work.
  19. As a non-exempt employee, how do I report the release time for the vaccine or booster on my time record?
    1. Non-exempt employees receiving release time can record up to four (4) hours as time worked on their time record and make a note in the “notes'' section indicating “COVID Vaccine”.
  20. As a non-exempt employee, how do I report using EPSL-qualifying time for the vaccine on my time record?
    1. Non-exempt staff employees using their EPSL to receive their vaccine or booster should record “EPSL” on their time sheets. Staff employees using EPSL should also submit their request for time off using the EPSL Request Form to covid-epsl-group@ucsc.edu.

Other COVID-19 Resources

Guidance for Faculty on In-Person Instruction
Upload Proof of Vaccination
Daily Symptom Checker
Roadmap to Recovery
News and Updates
UCOP-Information on COVID Vaccines
Regulations Governing Conduct of Non-Affiliates in the Buildings and on the Grounds of the University of California