Salmon Arm residents react to COVID-19 vaccine protesters entering schools

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WATCH: Salmon Arm residents react to protesters entering schools – Sep 18, 2021

Salmon Arm residents are reacting to events that transpired in their community in the last few days.

Vaccine protesters entered three schools on Friday to deliver “notices of vaccine liability,” causing the schools to be put under “hold and secure mode” — which basically means all doors are locked but classes stay in session.

Read more: Entire B.C. school district to go into lockdown after vaccine protesters enter 3 schools

Members of the community gave interviews but did not give their names for fear of retaliation.

“I was absolutely appalled. It just angered me so much that people are so selfish they would go to a place of learning,” said one man.

“I understand where they are coming from,” said another man in downtown Salmon Arm.

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“This is not good what’s going on. It’s poison that’s being injected, it’s dangerous,” referring to the COVID-19 vaccine.

Read more: B.C. considers no-protest ‘bubble zones’ after vaccine protesters target schools

One man, who said his grandchild was in class when protesters entered the school, said if he found out about the protesters sooner, he would have gone to the school himself in opposition.

“I am really upset. I mean, these are children and something like this will play in their minds for the rest of their lives because people just seem to not understand the science behind what’s going on,” he said.

“I mean, if you don’t want to take the vaccine, that’s your decision, but don’t try and push (your beliefs) on children.”

On Wednesday and Thursday, similar “notices of vaccine liability” were delivered to School District 83’s school board office, where a popup vaccination clinic was being held.

Read more: Protest held in Lethbridge against mandatory COVID-19 vaccines for front-line workers

One of the people at the school board incidents said the group has been misrepresented, although he admits he wasn’t present when people entered the schools and does not support protesters doing so.

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“We had approached them on the pretense of are they actually [informing] the kids on the shot, what it contains, what the implications are, because without the consent of parents, it’s their responsibility and their liability to make sure the kids know what they are doing and that they have options,” said Craig Johansen.

Johansen says he witnessed a potential vaccination, where he claims a health official did not inform a student about the dangers of getting the vaccine.

“They didn’t explain anything on the paperwork, they didn’t explain the side effects, they just handed this girl paperwork. What kid will read that?”

Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth had some choice words on Saturday afternoon for those that entered the schools on Friday.

“It’s disgraceful and completely unacceptable what these ‘covidiots’ did. You just do not walk into a school and start protesting, you don’t shut down a clinic where people are being vaccinated. It’s just beyond the pale,“ said Farnworth.

The school district has said it will stay in “hold and secure” mode until further notice, meaning all doors will be locked and all visitors must schedule appointments.

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