Kingston Health Sciences Centre vaccine policies met with protests

‘We respect Canadians’ rights to protest peacefully,’ Kingston Health Sciences Centre says

Around 50 people stood on Stuart St. in protest against mandatory vaccination.
Photo: 
An anonymously-organized protest against COVID-19 vaccination mandates took place on Sept. 7. The demonstration was held in front of the Kingston General Hospital (KGH), site of the Kingston Health Sciences Centre (KHSC).
 
Around 50 socially distanced people, backed by People’s Party of Canada (PPC) candidate Shelley Sayle-Udall, stood in front of KGH on Stuart St.  
 
On Sept. 7, KHSC announced that all staff, volunteers, and students must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Oct. 22. This decision was made due to the province’s deadline for Ontario hospitals to have a vaccine policy in place.
 
Currently, over 90 per cent of KHSC health-care workers are vaccinated, Elizabeth Bardon, Incident Commander for KHSC, said in an email to The Journal
 
“We are thankful that the protest today across from Kingston Health Sciences Centre’s (KHSC) Kingston General Hospital site was peaceful and did not impede people’s ability to access care,” Bardon wrote. 
 
Since implementing the provincial policy on immunization, which come into effect on Sept. 7, all KHSC staff who don’t provide proof of vaccination against the virus will have to submit a negative COVID-19 test at least once every seven days.  
 
“While we respect Canadians’ rights to protest peacefully, it is disheartening that the location was chosen specifically to be in full sight of our many dedicated staff who have worked tirelessly for so many months to provide compassionate care—including to hundreds of patients with COVID-19.”
 
“On behalf of the 90 per cent of KHSC health-care workers who are already vaccinated, we remain steadfast in encouraging everyone to get vaccinated to ensure our health-care system is not overwhelmed in this fourth wave of the pandemic.”

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