New Jersey nursing students petition after school requires COVID-19 vaccination

Elizabeth, N.J.-based Trinitas School of Nursing has mandated all students receive a COVID-19 vaccine by Jan. 22 or they must withdraw from the program, reports WLNY-TV.

 The nursing school sent out a Jan. 15 memo that said its affiliated hospital, Trinitas Regional Medical Center, also based in Elizabeth, requires all students and faculty "have received the complete COVID-19 vaccine series before the start of clinical."

The mandate is for the safety of patients and staff at the hospital, a spokesperson told WLNY-TV, acknowledging that staff are not yet required to get the vaccine.

Several students have signed a petition against the mandate. The school said it will provide a waiver to students with valid exemptions or those who tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days.

"I'd rather not have my rights taken away like that," a student told WLNY-TV.

Students who don't take the vaccine by the deadline "will be given a seat in the fall semester following the same process for registration," according to the memo. 

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