Ontario considering mandating COVID-19 vaccines for workers in some settings: source

WATCH ABOVE: There could be news on a vaccine mandate for high-risk settings in Ontario as soon as Tuesday. Kamil Karamali reports.

Global News has learned the Ontario government is considering mandating COVID-19 vaccines for some workers in high-risk settings.

A source said government officials are meeting Monday evening and will consider making the shots mandatory for health-care workers, long-term care workers, and possibly educators.

It could mean that workers in those fields would need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before working in person.

If the government decides to go ahead with the measure, an announcement could come as soon as Tuesday.

Read more:

Ontario to require school-based COVID-19 vaccine clinics for academic year

It would mark a big shift in policy for the Ford government. Just over one month ago, Premier Doug Ford said his government was not considering making COVID-19 vaccinations mandatory for health-care workers, saying it is their “constitutional right” to decide whether or not they want to get the shot.

The source also told Global News that the province may announce that booster shots will be made available to some of the most vulnerable residents.

And while officials have previously said that Ontario could move out of Step 3 of reopening once, among other requirements, 75 per cent of the eligible population became fully vaccinated (a goal which the province is nearing), the source said the province will likely remain in Step 3 for the foreseeable future with rising COVID-19 case counts.

The province’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Kieran Moore is expected to address the topic of mandatory vaccines and any further reopening during his weekly briefing Tuesday afternoon.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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