Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will fulfill his election promise to require all federal employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Trudeau is expected to announce a new policy of mandatory vaccinations for employees in federally regulated workplaces at a news conference this morning.
This would include mandatory vaccinations for anyone wishing to board a plane or train in Canada.
The policy is expected to be implemented by the end of this month.
Trudeau promised just before calling the election in August that his liberal government would make vaccinations mandatory for federal employees.
Since then, Treasury Board officials have been working out details in consultation with affected unions – including consequences for workers who refuse vaccinations.
On Tuesday, an executive from one of the unions said a draft policy that has been circulated would also require federal employees who work from home to be fully vaccinated if they want to keep their jobs. should go.
Stephen Aubry, vice president of the Canadian Public Service’s Vocational Institute, said the government appears to be leaning toward making vaccination “a condition of employment” that would apply to everyone, regardless of where they work.
This policy is expected to only allow for very narrow medical exceptions.
Trudeau’s government is also working with provinces on the production of vaccination certificates, or federal proof of passports, but that is not expected to be part of today’s announcement.
Federal officials say a national vaccine passport that can be used for international travel cannot be created unilaterally by Ottawa because all health data in Canada is compiled and stored by provinces and territories.
Compulsory vaccination became a key issue during last month’s election campaign.
Although personally in support of vaccines, Conservative leader Erin O’Toole was the only major party leader to oppose making them mandatory, arguing that individuals’ personal health decisions should be respected.
Trudeau pitched the issue as a matter of showing federal leadership, emphasizing the need for everyone to get vaccinated to protect themselves, their families, and their communities.
He was crushed throughout the campaign by extreme, abusive, anti-vaccination protesters and supporters of the People’s Party of Canada, which took advantage of the anti-vaccination movement to increase their share of the popular vote to nearly five percent.