Earlier this month, Ottawa’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Vera Etches, sent a letter to post-secondary institutions indicating her support for policies requiring on-campus self-identification of vaccination status. We have seen post-secondary institutions in Ottawa, as well as across the province, begin to issue vaccination policies and have been told that Algonquin College will issue one soon.
As we enter the fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, with new variants circulating, it is imperative that our workspaces remain safe. Science has shown us that vaccinations, physical distancing and masking are all important practices to keep the level of COVID down in our communities. As a local union, we will continue to support practices that encourage vaccination rates in order to protect our college and broader communities.
However, any college vaccination policy must be reasonable. It must respect our legal right to medical privacy and allow for appropriate human rights accommodations for those unable to be vaccinated.
We will continue to communicate with our membership on this issue. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to us at COMMS@locallines.org.
President, OPSEU Local 415