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U of W continues debate on vaccination mandate

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U of W continues debate on vaccination mandate

By Maggie Macintosh, Local Journalism Initiative ReporterWinnipeg Free Press

Fri., Aug. 13, 20212 min. read

Early Newspaper

Regardless of mounting tension on the University of Winnipeg to turn into the first put up-secondary institute in Western Canada to mandate COVID-19 vaccination, the college’s chief says the pass is now not any longer as easy because it looks.

A rising number of universities in Ontario — in conjunction with a handful of U15 members — have announced they’re going to require proof of vaccination to lend a hand campus, ahead of the 2021-22 tutorial 12 months.

“We’re staring at all these trends, obviously with plenty of interest, and we are paying attention to the college and the staff and the students, however there is a kind of things (at play),” stated James Currie, acting U of W president.

“There’s some moral concerns. There’s privateness. For us, there’s logistics, and we conclude have a strong safety concept, which is fully compliant with the general public effectively being orders. We checked that earlier this week with the authorities honest to be optimistic we’re consistent with the blueprint in which of other Manitoba put up-secondaries.”

Currie additionally famed colleagues in Ontario have gotten direction from their local public effectively being authorities to put into effect vaccine mandates on their respective grounds.

The hotly debated question about whether or no longer school, staff and students wishes to be fully immunized in opposition to COVID-19 to lend a hand U of W this fall dominated a senate meeting Wednesday.

The university’s school association argued its membership is overwhelmingly in favour of requiring vaccination in explain to offer protection to the campus neighborhood and population who cannot be immunized, at-worthy. Senior administration, nonetheless, backed the existing reopening concept, which contains each ventilation upgrades and crucial conceal exhaust.

Chemistry Prof. Chris Wiebe stated he hopes look tension from universities in Ontario will urged the U of W to swap its stance — and sooner as an different of later, given lessons are slated to originate up in lower than a month.

“If we can have crucial vaccines for (Winnipeg Blue) Bombers games and crucial vaccines now for (Winnipeg) Jets games, universities must additionally have them,” stated Wiebe, who is each a U of W senator and member-at-worthy on the college association council.

He stated concerns spherical crucial vaccines, in conjunction with moral worries in consequence of a ruling that found mandating the influenza shot for effectively being-care workers change into once “assault,” have been raised all the blueprint in which by means of the Wednesday meeting.

(In 2002, an arbitration board in Ontario dominated a public scientific institution may maybe presumably no longer require staff to gain flu pictures within the event of an epidemic among sufferers.)

Wiebe argued Thursday students already provide their college with their SIN, among other personal information, so vaccination plight must no longer be viewed as a controversial item to file. On the area of logistics, he suggested the college tell key fobs to vaccinated students to make exhaust of to enter structures.

“It’s slightly disturbing that they’re spending so worthy time brooding about why they shouldn’t have a vaccine mandate when it’s such a easy thing to conclude,” stated Wiebe.

University administration is scheduled to meet with the college association to converse concerning the subject these days.

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U of W continues debate on vaccination mandate