CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Scrutiny councillors are given wrong vaccine figures

Committee given report saying only 44 per cent of staff had received double jabs – but it did not reveal full picture

02 September, 2021 — By Richard Osley

Councillor Alison Kelly had been very concerned about the vaccine rate

COUNCILLORS were given incomplete and inaccurate figures on Tuesday, leaving them in a spin about how many people have actually been fully vaccinated from Covid.

And it became almost impossible for members of the resources scrutiny committee to discover what percentage of Camden’s workforce have had two jabs.

A report for the cross-party panel, which is meant to be a watchdog on Town Hall performance, said only 44 per cent of staff had received both vaccines.

This raised great concern among members, with chair Councillor Alison Kelly warning chief officers that “we really, really want and need them to be vaccinated”, while Lib Dem councillor Tom Simon said “we definitely need to pull our fingers out and find a way to get those figures up”.

Cllr Tom Simon

The only answer they got back was that the issue of vaccinations was down to personal choice and that staff had been given good information as to why they were impor­tant. But it later emerged that the discussion had been almost a complete waste of time because Camden itself did not recognise the figure in its own report as providing an accurate picture.

The council said yesterday (Wednesday) that 44 per cent was an incorrect number and that the figure only came from a survey of health and social care staff on the front line – and even then it was a matter of choice as to whether to disclose vaccination status.

Camden’s staff, the Town Hall confirmed, have not been forced to say whether or not they have had both vaccine doses and there is not a wider profile of how far the workforce has been protected.

Under government rules, 353 people working for Camden in care homes will need to have the jabs by November 11.

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