Hundreds of school bus drivers in the region are ready to walk away from their jobs as they face a mandate to get vaccinated against COVID-19 or else potentially lose their positions.
Amid a national school bus driver shortage, nearly 300 drivers are ready to walk away with the state’s COVID-19 vaccinate mandate set to go into effect on Monday, Sept. 27.
As part of Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont’s vaccination mandate, drivers who are unvaccinated must undergo weekly testing.
According to reports, upwards of 300 drivers are refusing to get vaccinated or be tested weekly, which could cause a strain for some school districts and families on Monday morning.
The Connecticut School Transportation Association (CSTA) wrote a letter to state education officials saying, "The school bus driver shortage will become 10 times worse on that day, and it will be a crisis driven by government.”
CSTA officials have requested that Lamont exempt some drivers from the vaccination mandate or provide a two-month extension to get testing in place, with the state reimbursing districts for COVID-19 testing.
In response, Lamont said that the state is actively working to ensure that schools and families are minimally impacted on Monday due to any potential driver shortage.
“I can tell you we’re in active discussions with the bus drivers,” he stated. “I can tell you we’ve done everything to accelerate getting additional bus drivers in place.”
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