Canada announced Friday that it would soon mandate all federal employees and other workers against Covid-19. This is in response to a Delta-driven rise in new infections.
Two days before the expected call of Justin Trudeau, Liberal Prime Minister, to mandate vaccines, the mandate will be available to all passengers on cruise ships, air and train. It could become a key issue during the election campaign. Conservatives have criticized it as an exaggeration.
Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, stated that public employees will have the opportunity to get vaccinated by October 31st. He also said that state-owned companies and federally regulated employers should follow his lead.
LeBlanc stated that the mandatory requirement is something LeBlanc expected to see in federal government employees. This is the only way to stop the pandemic, and it will allow for the safe operation of the economy.
He said that there will be testing for people who are unable to be vaccinated due to medical reasons.
Omar Alghabra, Transport Minister, stated that federally-regulated employees will need to get vaccinated along with some travelers.
Alghabra stated that this included all commercial airline travelers and interprovincial train passengers, as well as passengers aboard large vessels such cruise ships with overnight accommodation.
Canada’s largest airline, Air Canada, and Westjet welcomed the mandate to provide vaccines for their workers.
Canada is home to 300,000. There are also hundreds of thousands of federal employees.
According to EKOS Research’s July poll, a majority of Canadians favor a proof-of vaccination system. However, it is less popular among Conservative voters, who tend to not be vaccinated as often as those who support the Liberals.
Trudeau’s main rival, Conservative leader Erin O’Toole said vaccines were the “most powerful tool” in fighting Covid-19, but that the mandate for vaccines was too extreme.
Mathew Clancy, a spokesperson for the Conservative Party said in an email that “Conservatives support Canadians’ right to choose their health.” “Canadians demand reasonable measures such as quick testing for people who have not been vaccinated.”
That would be more in line with the U.S., where the White House is requiring all U.S. federal workers be vaccinated or face regular testing and mask mandates.
Many other countries require vaccinations to be provided for health care and home workers. Some also require documentation of immunizations in order to gain access bars or restaurants and public places like bars and restaurants. Canada plans to issue a vaccination passport that can be used for international travel.
Canada boasts one of the highest inoculation rates worldwide, with 82% having had one shot and 71% fully vaccinated. In spite of the fourth Delta wave, active cases increased by two-thirds in just two weeks.
Reporting by Julie Gordon, Steve Scherer in Ottawa and Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Paul Simao
Julie Gordon and Steve Scherer, both from Reuters, wrote this article. It was licensed legally through Industry Dive’s publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to [email protected]
Publited Sat, 14 August 2021 at 11:55:00 GMT +0000