Earlier this week Prime Minister Justin Trudeau along with Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland announced a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for travelers and federal workers. This new mandate is another layer for protecting Canadian’s against COVID-19.

Travelers traveling by train or plane will need to be fully vaccinated by the end of November for those aged 12 and older, and COVID-19 rapid testing before boarding will no longer be an option.

Federal workers, and Canadian Armed Forces members will be required also to be fully vaccinated by October 29, 2021.

If a worker does not wish to be vaccinated or does not disclose their vaccination status by then, they will be placed on administrative leave with no pay. Trudeau made the two mandates part of his re-election campaign last month.

Newly re-elected Kenora MP Eric Melillo returned to Ottawa this week for meetings, and one of their discussions was on this new vaccine mandate, and the effect it may have on federal workers.

“We know from the information that has been given to us that there will be some exemptions around this but we don’t know the details yet on what those will be,” said Melillo.

Melillo did touch on the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine.

“As we’ve said continuously we encourage everyone to get a vaccine they are safe and effective but we also need to use the other tools we have such as rapid testing to ensure that everyone is safe in the workplace,” added Melillo.

The latest Canadian COVID-19 vaccine statistics show around 89 per cent of those eligible have received one dose of the vaccine while about 82 per cent are fully vaccinated.