Unite Scotland has demanded intervention by the Scottish government in response to offshore contractor Canadian Natural Resources (CNR) International introducing mandatory vaccinations.
ccording to the union, the policy came into full effect on 14 January, and no worker is permitted by CNR to mobilise on to any of the offshore platforms it operates unless they have been vaccinated.
CNR has also informed its contracting firms working on these platforms including Petrofac, Aker, EnerMech, Bilfinger, Global E&C that no worker is to return unless they are vaccinated.
Other offshore contractors and operators have chosen not to pursue mandatory vaccinations but instead to focus on education and communication to boost vaccination take-up. It’s understood that similar drives by other firms have led to over 80% of the offshore workforce being vaccinated
said Unite Scotland, with John Boland, Unite industrial officer, adding that the union will not:
Hesitate to challenge any employer, including CNR, that disciplines or dismisses members for exercising their right not to be vaccinated including the consideration of legal action
For its side, CNR stated that it “has implemented extensive measures to reduce the risk of exposure and transmission of COVID-19 in our operations, including a vaccination policy.”
Our decisions are made with the health and safety of all company staff and individuals working with CNR International in mind
For this reason, CNR added that it has been liaising closely with contracting companies to encourage their offshore employees not yet vaccinated to join the majority of the offshore crew who are.
This includes providing access to medical professionals, help in addressing any concerns or logistical barriers to vaccination, and granting exceptions, where appropriate
CNR mentioned, explaining that until now, “the response to this approach has been positive, with a significant majority of our offshore workforce now vaccinated.”
In a similar development, the Norwegian union representing offshore oil and gas workers, Industri Energi, opposes to the decision by Aker BP to introduce a Covid-19 vaccine mandate for its offshore employees from 1 February.