No charges yet in CK for proof of vaccination violations

(Photo of a COVID-19 receipt by Adelle Loiselle)

There have been zero charges laid in Chatham-Kent since proof of vaccination became mandatory last month.

On Thursday, the Municipality of Chatham-Kent and Chatham-Kent Public Health reported no charges, three weeks after the initiative went into effect.

Chatham-Kent Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Colby believes the program is still running smoothly, even though there have been some rumours of fraudulent certificates being presented in an attempt to enter establishments.

Colby said the local health unit is keeping an eye on the new and enhanced provincial COVID-19 vaccine certificate and verification app system, adding that public health officials will be keeping on top of proof of vaccination as things evolve.

“Well we’ll see after the 22nd when the program really rolls out with the standardized certification, but at the moment things are quite smooth,” he said.

Premier Doug Ford is expected to give an update on Friday on Ontario’s enhanced COVID-19 vaccine certificate and verification app.

Meanwhile, the president of the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance reported that 96 per cent of her staff is on track to be vaccinated by the mandatory deadline of October 31, 2021. Lori Marshall also said the number of staff who have declined the vaccine has dropped from 54 to 38 over the past two weeks. She noted the number of those who have refused the shot is half and half between clinical and support staff.

Those who are not fully immunized by the end of the month will be fired. Marshall said the hospital leadership continues working to get all staff vaccinated.

Marshall said any former staff who had a change of heart about getting vaccinated after the October 31 deadline would have their situation reviewed on a case by case basis with no guarantees.