British Columbia Sun

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

B.C. Ferry labours alert sudden vaccination instruction may result in staff paucity

Key points: 

  • B.C. Ferries states most ferry crews are reporting they are already vaccinated.
  • The company disagrees with the point. 

Vaccination mandate may result in staff shortages: 

The union representing B.C. Ferry labours say a recent vaccination mandate for federally-controlled industries gave too little caution and may result in staffing scarcity, as staff clambers to meet demands. 

But B.C. ferries opposes. 

A spokesperson states most ferry crews are reporting they are already vaccinated, so the stint to requiring shots would be “smooth” sailing. 

The ferry company states that all employees and contractors who work onboard vessels are required to have their first dose of vaccination by Nov.15 and their second dose by Jan. 24. The rest of B.C. Ferries’ labours need to be completely vaccinated by Feb. 28, 2002. 

The firms put forth a strict decision against those who fail to meet the deadlines. They will be put on leave without salary. 

There was a virtual town hall meeting conducted by the union where hundreds of ferry labours attended the meeting on Nov. 9. 

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The meeting incorporated labour law experts who handled questions from the workers striving with what the union called “significant challenges” to meet covid-19 testing demands on time. The union states the current regulations are tough, especially for the staff working in remote areas. 

“The ferry system in B.C. has so little staff resiliency, I hope they are right but we could see shortages,” said Eric McNeely, the provincial president of the B.C. Ferry and Marine Workers’ Union. Source – cbc.ca

A covid-19 vaccination programme was provided to employees on Nov. 5. 

Crew members must divulge by Nov. 10 even if they are not vaccinated to grant B.C. Ferries time to confirm numbers to convey Canada by Monday, Nov. 15. 

McNeely states the short-notice limits are “unreasonable” as staffing is too narrow and it may cause worker shortages. 

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