UConn-AAUP Vaccination Policy Survey Results

On July 31, 2021, UConn-AAUP surveyed its members to determine if they would support a university vaccination policy that required mandatory vaccination of faculty and staff. The survey was closed on August 3, 2021 at 10:00 am with 1,245 responses. The following is a summary of the results of the survey.

Report on AAUP Vaccination Policy Survey

August 5, 2021

Summary

The responses to our survey suggest that members of the AAUP bargaining unit overwhelmingly support a mandatory vaccine policy for the faculty and staff in AAUP with University-authorized exemptions. 94% supported a mandatory vaccination policy with authorized (e.g., medical) exceptions and 92% support frequent testing of unvaccinated. Less than 5% indicated that they might ask for an exemption or did not want to answer that question. The 3 question survey had 1335 full or partial answers. There were a handful of instances of possible duplicate responses (based on duplicate IP addresses), so the analysis was conducted on 1245 responses from unique IP addresses.

Report: Report on Letterhead

The survey consisted of 3 questions and was distributed on July 31, 2021 by anonymous link. The survey was closed to new responses on August 3, 2021 at 10 am. The number of recorded responses was 1335, of which 132 did not answer all 3 questions. Since the main question was the first item, we included all 1335 responses in the initial count.

The first question asked:

As you may know, the University has established a mandatory vaccination policy for all students taking classes and living on campus in Fall 2021 with certain medical and other exemptions.

When it comes to vaccination requirements for all faculty and staff working on campus, do you support a policy of mandatory COVID-19 vaccination with approved medical and other exceptions?

  • Support mandatory vaccination for faculty and staff  
  • Oppose mandatory vaccination for faculty and staff
  • Prefer not to say
  • Support mandatory vaccination without exceptions

At least 94.1% of the respondents (excluding duplicate answers) support either mandatory vaccinations policy, with 22.3% supporting a “no exceptions” policy (Figure 1). Less than 5% (4.75) say they oppose a mandatory vaccination policy with authorized medical exceptions.

 

Figure 1: Support for a mandatory vaccination policy with medical exceptions

The second question asked:

If there were a faculty/staff vaccine mandate, would you support regular (e.g., weekly) testing for COVID-19 infection for faculty and staff working on campus who were not vaccinated.” 93% of the 1120 retained responses (excluding duplicate answers) said they supported frequent testing of the unvaccinated.

Q2 |           Freq.     Percent       Cum.

————+———————————–

Support   |   1,040       92.86       92.86

Oppose   |         55       4.91       97.77

Won’t say|         25       2.23     100.00

————+———————————–

Total |     1,120     100.00

The third question asked:

If there were a vaccine mandate for faculty and staff, what is the likelihood that you personally would apply for an exemption?” The responses do not vary much from the answers to the previous surveys. Over 95% report that they are either very unlikely or unlikely to ask for an exemption, and only 4.2% indicated that they are likely to ask for an exemption or did not want to answer that question.

Q3 |     Freq.     Percent     Cum.

————+———————————–

Extremely likely   |         23       2.04           2.04

Likely   |           6       0.53          2.57

Unlikely   |         57       5.06         7.63

Extre. unlikely         1,021       90.59       98.23

DK/ won’t say |         20       1.77     100.00

————+———————————–

Total |     1,127     100.00

 

About 2% of respondents indicated that they both opposed mandatory vaccination and were likely to ask for an exemption. The other ~2% of those opposing vaccine mandates said they would likely not (or would not) ask for an exemption. It is impossible for us to tell if the latter group opposes vaccine mandates per se or is both oppositional and non-compliant.

The overall results do seem to suggest widespread support in the bargaining unit for a mandatory vaccination policy and frequent testing of people who are not vaccinated. There appears to be little interest in exemptions from a vaccine mandate. While the number of responses is well over half of the bargaining unit, respondents are not a scientific sample of members. This was a voluntary “opt-in” survey. It is impossible to know whether the non-respondents are more (or less) likely to support vaccine mandates.

NOTE: The survey was distributed by anonymous email link sent to the entire bargaining unit mailing list, it is impossible to verify with certainty that the survey was only taken by members of the unit or taken only once. There is little evidence of 90 surveys were registered as coming from the same location and IP address as another survey. While these instances involved two people taking the survey from the same computer, the analysis above is based the 1245 responses from unique IP addresses. The 1245 includes about 130 unique “incomplete” responses that only answered the first question of the survey.

Whether or not the 90 possible duplicates are included in the analysis has no substantive impact on the overall conclusions, because the possible duplicated make up less than 10% of responses from unique IP addresses, and the distribution of answers among the duplicates is like the distribution of the other completed surveys.