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Waterloo Region LTC home fires 14 employees who did not get COVID-19 vaccination shot

Over the weekend, the Waterloo and Kingston public health units announced they would only be giving doses of Moderna to those over the age of 30. AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic

Waterloo Region says 14 staff have been fired from Sunnyside Home in Waterloo after they chose not to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

The move follows a directive from the provincial government requiring all staff, volunteers, students and support workers at Ontario long-term care homes to get their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by Nov. 15, or show proof of a medical exemption.

Read more: COVID-19: Ontario assisting about a dozen long-term care homes as 1st-dose deadline hits

 

Monday was the initial deadline for workers to be fully vaccinated, but the Ministry of Long-Term Care pushed that date to Dec. 13.

The region, which runs the long-term-care home, says it has been encouraging staff to get vaccinated.

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“We have supported staff through the process of getting their vaccination and I am pleased that we were able to raise our numbers and get more staff vaccinated,” Region CAO Bruce Lauckner said.

“Unfortunately, some staff made the decision to remain unvaccinated. While we had hoped for a different outcome, we must follow direction from the Ministry of Long Term Care.”

The region says that the employees represent a variety of roles at the home. It is working to fill the positions as quickly as possible.

Read more: Health Canada reviewing Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for kids 6-11

It also says 18 of its 452 other employees have currently had one dose of a vaccine, which allows them to continue working.

The province said 98 per cent of workers had received a first shot as of Monday.

—With files from the Canadian Press

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