May 29th, 2024

Vast majority of City employees vaccinated

By Alejandra Pulido-Guzman - Lethbridge Herald on November 17, 2021.


The City of Lethbridge announced Tuesday that the vast majority of their employees are now vaccinated, since a policy was put in place in late September.
“There have been four voluntary resignations from the city and no mandatory terminations of employment by the city,” said Jason Elliott, General Manager of People and Culture for the City of Lethbridge.
As of November 15, which was the deadline placed in September, 95 per cent of City staff have reported their vaccination status and of those, 96 per cent are fully vaccinated or in the process of becoming fully vaccinated.
When referred to in the process of being fully vaccinated, it is important to note that it means they have received their first dose and are in that waiting period before being eligible for their second dose, and it also includes those that are waiting the two week waiting period after their second dose, until such time in which by AHS definition they’re considered fully vaccinated.
The breakdown of those numbers is as follows, 94 per cent of all Fire/EMS staff have responded to the vaccination status request and 97 percent are reporting as either being vaccinated or in the process of being vaccinated. This group includes employees of the public safety communication centre and fire prevention, as well as the supporting services in Fire/EMS.
As for the Lethbridge Police Services, 96 per cent of total LPS staff have and 92 per cent are reported as being vaccinated or in the process of being vaccinated.
“We’re very thankful that the high majority of our employees here at LPS have become fully vaccinated or in the process of becoming fully vaccinated,” said Inspector Jason Walper.
He added that because of their commitment, they have been able to continue providing the critical services the community needs, while keeping the safety of their staff and the community a priority.
The percentages are based on 1762 total city employees which includes those in administrative roles as well as Lethbridge Fire/EMS and Lethbridge Police Services.
“It’s important to acknowledge at this point, that this hasn’t been easy. For some this is, as many things COVID related, has been a divisive conversation for some and we continue to try to work with folks where they’re at,” said Elliot.
Elliot explained that the conversations were not to convinced them of something that they are not prepared to do, but to share understanding and education and where it’s appropriate alternatives to complying with this policy.
“The policy does permit those who haven’t been vaccinated to submit to rapid testing prior to every shift. The exception to that rule would be the Fire/EMS group that is involved directly in the provision of services,” said Elliot.
Under the Alberta Health Services contract, that group will not be permitted to submit rapid testing results at the beginning of every shift as the AHS policy requires full vaccination compliance, which has a deadline of Nov.30.
And as per vaccination status of members of the general public, AHS is now requiring a vaccine record with a QR code, which can be presented either digitally or in paper form to those participating in the Restrictions Exemption Program. A valid identification that matches the vaccine record is also required for adults 18 years and older to be presented with the QR code.
Other accepted forms of proof of vaccination include other provincial vaccine records, First Nation vaccine records, ArriveCan app and valid international travel identity document, Canadian Armed Forces vaccine records and U.S Military proof of vaccination and ID card.

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