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OPINION – PSAC – Public service workers shouldn’t be disciplined over vaccination requirements

Ottawa – Statement from Chris Aylward, national president of the Public Service Alliance of Canada:

“This week, national political party leaders have made concerning statements about disciplining or terminating federal public service workers who choose not to be vaccinated as part of the government’s vaccine mandate proposal.

PSAC supports vaccination requirements for federal workers to ensure the safety of our members in their workplaces, and to protect our communities, but using discipline and termination to enforce them is unacceptable.

PSAC has been in in consultation with the federal government on their vaccination proposal, and our position is clear: employees with a valid medical reason for being unvaccinated, or for reasons protected by human rights legislation, must be offered a formal accommodation under the law.

In addition, if there are workers who are unable or unwilling to be vaccinated, the government must temporarily reassign those employees to other duties where possible, or allow for alternate work arrangements such as remote work.

Where required, other measures should be explored, including regular screening and rapid testing.

PSAC will continue to play an active role in consultations as the federal government develops its vaccination requirements plan. We will do our utmost to ensure the safety our members while protecting their rights in the workplace – including their right to privacy.”

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