Nine city employees face disciplinary action for not complying with vaccine policy

Sarnia City Hall. September 2018 Photo by Melanie Irwin

While the majority of city staff have opted to comply with a newly enforced COVID-19 vaccination policy, those who haven’t, have been placed on unpaid leave and face possible termination.

City of Sarnia Corporate Services General Manager David Logan said a total of nine employees across the city “disappointingly” chose to not comply with the policy.

“We continue to work with our union partners and those employees to get them to a place of compliance,” said Logan. “We will continue on the standard normal progressive disciplinary path and at some point, their employment may be in jeopardy.”

On September 23, 12 employees were identified as being non-compliant but Logan said fortunately that number decreased by three.

Logan was not able to confirm which departments the nine employees work in.

A vaccine policy was approved on September 13. City employees, contractors, and consultants were given until September 23 to provide proof of a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine or a medical exemption. Proof of a second dose is due by November 8th.

Individuals who are not willing to disclose their vaccination status, as per the policy, are required to complete a education module and agree to regular to antigen testing.

Logan said after speaking with union representatives and others within corporate services, it appears the response to the policy has been positive and well-received overall.

“Like many employers, based on the advice of Dr. Greensmith and Lambton Public Health, we are doing this for the health and safety of our employees, our customers, clients, and the [broader] community,” said Logan.

A vaccine policy for Sarnia council members and committee appointees was approved earlier this month and will come into effect on October 31.