Letter to the Editor – COVID-19 Vaccine

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Dear Editor,

A couple of weeks ago I went to Kemptville District Hospital for an X-ray. Upon arrival, I was given a mask, hand sanitizer and asked about ten questions relating to my health/wellbeing. I presume that this is a mandatory requirement of Ontario, to try and minimize the Covid risk to staff and patients in the hospital, from my short visit. I absolutely agree with this small contribution to keep Covid at bay.

I should add that I am of the age that I will be vaccinated in mid April, against Covid 19. My motivation for getting the vaccine is primarily to protect myself, but to a smaller degree, I believe the science, that says it reduces the transmission of the virus to others.

Imagine my surprise, this week to read a number of articles showing that thousands of “care” workers throughout Ontario have been offered and refused the vaccine. I must admit to being naïve with regard to vaccinations, as I have always assumed that if you worked in hospitals, retirement homes, long term care homes or any other similar establishments, is was mandatory to get the flu vaccination each year. This is apparently not the case, as it is against Canada’s Charter of Freedoms and Rights.

This leads me to ask three questions. Ontario has decided that I should sit at home now for 4 weeks to try and reduce the spread of Covid, just in case I step within 2 meters of somebody on my once weekly outing to the grocery store. While I am at home, unvaccinated “care” workers who are in close contact with many of society’s most vulnerable people every day, continue to work? Secondly if a career in “care” has been chosen, surely there is a moral duty associated with this career to do everything possible not to harm the people they are looking after? Thirdly, I understand that kids can be barred from school, if they do not have the required vaccinations, but “care” workers cannot be barred, if they have not had their appropriate vaccinations. How can this be right?

Politicians often wonder why their messages are not understood by people. Why can my Canadian Charter of Freedom and Rights be infringed by being told to stay at home for 4 weeks, but more dangerous practices of unvaccinated care workers continuing to work, cannot be stopped.

Bill White

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