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British Columbia considers paid time off for workers to get COVID-19 vaccine

Click to play video: 'Premier Horgan says province considering paid time off for workers to get COVID-19 vaccine' Premier Horgan says province considering paid time off for workers to get COVID-19 vaccine
Premier John Horgan says B.C. is looking to follow Saskatchewan's lead in amending labour codes to allow time off for workers to get their COVID-19 vaccine. – Mar 24, 2021

Workers in British Columbia may soon be eligible to get paid if they miss work to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Premier John Horgan said Wednesday the province is looking to follow Saskatchewan’s lead in amending labour codes.

“It is very much under consideration by our cabinet. I believe we will certainly be moving to amend the Employment Standards Act,” Horgan said.

The Saskatchewan government amended health and safety regulations so employees who want to get a vaccine can leave work for up to three consecutive hours without losing pay or benefits.

Click to play video: 'One-on-one with B.C.’s Health Minister Adrian Dix' One-on-one with B.C.’s Health Minister Adrian Dix
One-on-one with B.C.’s Health Minister Adrian Dix – Mar 24, 2021

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains is looking at whether British Columbia can make the changes through amending regulations.

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The changes would be similar to rules that give workers up to three hours paid off to vote in elections.

Read more: B.C. to hire 1,400 out-of-work tourism and hospitality workers at vaccination clinics

“We want to be sure that those that are fortunate to continue working do not have to give up pay to get vaccinated,” Horgan said.

“We want to make sure that this is as seamless as can be.”

The change in Saskatchewan took effect immediately. That government has said employees can take more than three hours off if an employer determines that’s warranted.

–with files from the Canadian Press

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