In a press conference today, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland announced two new mandatory vaccine measures for Canadians.
First, Freeland announced that federal public servants in core public administration must be fully vaccinated by October 29th.
This measure will apply to those who work in the federal government’s various departments, the RCMP, Correctional Services, Canada Border Service agencies and many more.
Those not fully vaccinated or those who do not disclose their vaccination status by October 29th will be placed on administrative leave without pay as early as November 15th.
This new requirement is necessary in order to protect these workers, their families, their communities as well as those who do business with them directly.
Freeland also said the Canadian government is directing crown corporations and agencies to implement policies that mirror those they announced today.
The Chief of Defence staff will also issue a directive mandating vaccinations for the Canadian Armed Forces. The Canadian government is also working with employers in federally regulated workplaces to do the same.
Next, Trudeau announced new vaccination mandates for travelling within Canada.
According to the Prime Minister, everyone aged twelve and up travelling within Canada on a plane or train should be fully vaccinated by the end of October.
Trudeau acknowledges there will be a short time where those not vaccinated will be in the process of doing so, therefore a negative COVID-19 test will be acceptable prior to boarding a plane or train for a short time longer.
However, by the end of November, all passengers will be required to be fully vaccinated in order to board. Providing a negative COVID-19 test will no longer be an option.
Trudeau also announced vaccine passports for international travel are in the works as well as legislation making it a criminal offence to threaten or harass healthcare workers.
During the question period following these announcements, Trudeau was faced with many inquiries into his trip to Tofino on September 30th, the first federally observed National Day of Truth and Reconciliation.
“Travelling on September 30th was a mistake and I regret it” he responded.