Multiple Dayton employees on leave, some positive tests in first week of vaccine, testing policy

DAYTON — Over 500 City of Dayton employees have submitted COVID-19 tests a week after the city’s mandate went into effect requiring either vaccination or weekly tests.

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A city spokesperson said 523 employees were tested in the first week, which resulted in three positive tests. Eighteen employees refused to submit a test and have since been placed on unpaid administrative leave, the spokesperson said.

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A dozen of those employees now on leave are split between the city’s police and fire departments, with six employees on each department now on unpaid leave. The other departments with employees now on leave is split between water services, three, power, two, and finance, one.

In the days leading up to the policy’s effective date, city officials said they were prepared for a potential “public safety nightmare” when the policy went into effect Nov. 1. The policy was announced in August and required all city employees to be fully vaccinated or be subjected to weekly COVID-19 testing.

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Also in the days leading up to Nov. 1, leaders representing the union for police and firefighters attempted to negotiate with the city but no changes were made in city policy.

Workers placed on leave can return to work with either proof of a negative test result or COVID-19 vaccination.

We’ll continue to update this story as we learn more.