Posted on Apr 20, 2021
NDP EXTENDS OLIVE BRANCH TO GOVERNMENT TO FAST-TRACK BILL OFFERING PAID LEAVE FOR WORKERS TO GET VACCINATED
EDMONTON – Alberta’s NDP is proposing to work with Jason Kenney and the UCP to immediately pass legislation by the end of this week that grants special leave to Alberta workers to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
The offer made by Leader Rachel Notley follows a decision by the British Columbia Government to introduce legislation allowing all workers in that province to take three hours of paid leave to get vaccinated or to assist a family member in doing so. Saskatchewan introduced similar measures in mid-March.
“No one wants to log on to book their appointment just to find the only spots left are ones they simply can’t miss work for. These variants won’t wait for a vacation day,” Notley said.
“We need to do all we can to ensure Alberta workers can get vaccinated. I’m calling on Jason Kenney to work with us and do the same. If he presents a simple, clean bill to provide all Albertans with three paid hours to get themselves or a family member vaccinated, we will work with him to pass it before the legislature breaks for constituency week on Thursday.”
Notley noted that Alberta has the highest per-capita case rate of COVID-19 in Canada. Effective Tuesday, all Albertans age 40 and up can register to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine; Notley said she hopes uptake increases rapidly and paid leave would help.
“I know many Albertans are concerned to see our vaccination sites running at a fraction of their capacity even while daily case numbers climb,” Notley said. “Providing this paid leave benefit — and doing it in a bipartisan way — would help protect as many Albertans as possible, as quickly as possible.”