In response to Justin Trudeau’s announcement, Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) President Chris Aylward, which represents more than 160,000 federal workers, said that the union has concerns about what the government is proposing as it seems “rushed” and the unions were not consulted.
“When the prime minister first talked about vaccination policy on August 13, he said that they would be talking to the unions… There was no meaningful consultation on this policy,” President of PSAC Chris Aylward said in an interview.
“When the prime minister first talked about vaccination policy on August 13, he said that they would be talking to the unions. We were told that there would be full consultation on this and there wasn’t quite simply. We were given this draft policy late Friday evening and we’re told Monday you have to respond. Yesterday, they extended the deadline to last night. And then at 11:00, the Prime Minister makes this announcement. There was no consultation. We see all kinds of holes in this. They rushed this through. There’s no doubt in my mind about that. They just wanted to make this to say, hey, tick off the box. We just announced an election promise that we made. How is this going to be applied and implemented in the workplace? We have no clue. We have more questions than answers around this policy because there was no true meaningful consultation at all.”
In another interview, President of PSAC Chris Aylward said the organization will defend its member’s rights.
In recent weeks, the RCMP union also said that it would support its member’s ”right” to refuse to get vaccinated. The RCMP union also stated that it would back up any member who refuses vaccination once the mandatory vaccination policy for the federal public service is in place.
In an email from the National Police Federation (NPF), they state that “The [National Police Federation] supports a member’s right to choose to be vaccinated or not,” and “We will assist and represent members individually with their choice and its possible employment consequences.”