Many Canadian employers are wondering what they need to do in order to establish a vaccination policy for their workplace. If they even should create a vaccination policy for their workplace. The government of Canada has put in place guidelines and requirements that must be met by all employers, so you’ll want to make sure you’re following them! In this article, we will discuss the process of establishing a vaccine policy for your Canadian workplace.
Does Your Workplace Need A Vaccine Policy
Some workplaces in Ontario are subjected to mandatory vaccination policies under the Ministry of Health’s Directive #6 or employer’s occupational health requirements supported by Ministry Guidance. These workplaces include long=term care, retirement homes, and hospitals.
If your workplace doesn’t fall under this category then it is still suggested that you develop a vaccination policy in order to inform workers of expectations and maintain a safe work environment. Workers in your office should be educated about the benefits of vaccinations and what they are able to do in order to protect themselves, their families, and their co-workers.
The policy should adhere to the Occupational Health and Safety Act, the Ontario Human Rights Code, and privacy laws. Or the policies which relate to you in your province or territory.
Key Components in A Vaccination Policy
Identify the scope and purpose
First educate your staff about the policy’s intended aim and the risks of COVID-19 transmission, as well as who it will apply to and what personal information will be collected.
Make sure to have a clear line of communication where your employees can ask questions and express concerns.
List Steps Workers Must Take
State the specific actions that workers must take in order to provide proof of vaccination. If they qualify for a medical exemption, it must be written by a qualified physician attesting to the duration of the condition. The reason for the exemption does not need to be stated.
It might also be a good idea for your workers to complete a vaccine education course if they choose to not get vaccinated. At the end signing a document that declares they understand the risks of COVID-19 and the benefits of vaccination.
Next specify a date for when workers must complete the steps and show compliance with the new policy.
List Available Support
Tell your workers you’re able to provide them with paid leave to get vaccinated. Demonstrate your commitment to supporting workers getting vaccinated. Furthermore, if you offer sick days make sure to remind them that they can take paid sick days after they get their shot. If you offer any other support make sure to clearly communicate it.
Provisions for Unvaccinated Workers
Alternative options for workers who don’t want to get vaccinated should be listed in your policy. For example, it might include
- frequent testing
- use of additional PPE
- modified work to limit contact etc.
Also, be sure to state the consequences for workers who do not follow the policy’s standards. It might lead to termination in some circumstances.
The policy should also be compliant with all applicable privacy laws. The policy should outline what personal information will be collected and how it will be used. It should also stipulate how the information will be protected.
Bottom line yes, you should create a vaccination policy for your workplace. Establishing a vaccination policy for your workplace is crucial to protect workers, their families, and the public. Make sure you’re following all guidelines set by the government of Canada in order to create an effective vaccine policy that will keep your staff healthy.
For more information visit your province or city’s website and always seek legal counsel if you’re unsure if your policy is up to standard.
If you’re looking to hire or looking for a job please don’t hesitate to reach out to us!