The City of Red Deer has implemented a new policy aimed at relieving pressures on our healthcare system and protecting the health and safety of City of Red Deer staff and volunteers. The COVID-19 Immunization Policy outlines the requirements for City of Red Deer staff and volunteers to be fully immunized by November 28, 2021.
“Over the past 19 months, we have continuously enhanced measures and encouraged immunization in our organization, but we are at a point in the pandemic where our healthcare system is overloaded, we are seeing our highest number of cases in our community resulting in serious consequences ,” said Interim City Manager Tara Lodewyk. “As one of Red Deer’s largest employers, we are ready to take the next step in protecting our community and our healthcare system, and today, this is through our new internal immunization policy.”
The new policy applies to all City of Red Deer staff and volunteers, and requires them to be fully immunized by November 28, 2021.
To comply with this date, the following timelines apply:
• for a two dose vaccine series, employees and volunteers must receive one dose of COVID-19 vaccine by October 15, 2021, and the second dose by November 13, 2021.
• for a single dose vaccine series, employees and volunteers must receive the dose by November 13, 2021.
The current measures in place in City facilities for staff and patrons will continue to apply including masking, physical distancing, enhanced hand and surface sanitizing and staying home when sick.
“Immunizations are a contentious issue. People have strong opinions, which create tension in our workplaces and in our personal lives, but despite all of the emotions around this particular topic, a City of Red Deer Covid-19 immunization policy is now necessary for our staff ,” said Lodewyk. “This policy is about doing what we can to protect our employees, our community and our healthcare systems. It is about reducing the impacts on our already over-crowded hospitals where healthcare workers are working tirelessly as they continue to navigate this pandemic without judgement or hesitation. But we all must do our part too, and this policy is one step our staff at The City of Red Deer can take in the effort to battle the Covid-19 pandemic.”
The policy will be monitored throughout the pandemic and adjusted as needed. It will be reviewed and evaluated every year following that.
The City of Red Deer implemented the COVID-19 Immunization Policy for employees and volunteers.
1. Why is The City implementing the COVID-19 Immunization Policy?
The City is implementing this policy to provide an added layer of protection for our staff to keep them and our community healthy while also protecting our healthcare system. Evidence-based data shows being fully immunized is an effective way to reduce the risk of being hospitalized from COVID-19. The City will use every reasonable precaution to safeguard employees from the risks of COVID-19.
2. Who is required to be immunized?
The COVID-19 Immunization Policy applies to all City of Red Deer employees and volunteers, with the exception of temporary workers hired solely for an election, and is not intended to replace/reduce any current departmental COVID Immunization/Vaccination Policies or Provincial/organizational COVID-19 measures in place.
3. Will new hires have the same requirements?
Yes, new employees will have to comply with the COVID-19 Immunization Policy.
4. Which policy does Emergency Services staff need to follow?
Emergency Services staff covered by the Emergency Services Department Administrative Policy – COVID-19: Mandatory Vaccination will be required to comply with the Emergency Services Policy. Emergency Services staff that the Department Administrative Policy does not apply to will follow the Corporate Administrative – Covid-19 Immunization Policy
5. Are contractors required to follow this policy?
The COVID-19 Immunization Policy applies only to City of Red Deer employees and volunteers. The City will not be requiring proof of vaccination from its contractors, suppliers or partners at this time, but we expect that all workers on our sites continue to adhere to all legislated public health restrictions including physical distancing, masking and not attending the worksite while experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. If this creates significant operational concerns for a specific contract situation, the contract manager is encouraged to discuss with Legal Services to determine if there may be other options for working a requirement into a current or upcoming contract.
6. What is the deadline be fully immunized?
All employees are required to be Fully Immunized against COVID-19 with a COVID-19 vaccine series by Sunday, November 28, 2021. This timeline allows a reasonable amount of time for unvaccinated or partially-vaccinated staff to schedule and receive the required doses by the deadline. Below are timelines, depending on whether receiving a single-dose or multi-dose vaccine.
a. Single Dose: Must be vaccinated on or before November 13, 2021 to be fully immunized by November 28, 2021.
b. Two Dose Vaccine Series: Must receive first dose on or before Friday October 15, 2021. A second dose must be scheduled on or before November 13, 2021 to be fully immunized by November 28, 2021.
7. What if an employee is already immunized?
Staff who are fully immunized can submit their immunization records to Human Resources, preferably as soon as possible but no later than November 19, 2021.
8. Is The City providing time off work for employees to get vaccinated?
Yes, employees are able to take up to three (3) hours paid time to get each dose of COVID-19 vaccination as per the Provincial vaccination pay legislation.
9. What are the approved vaccinations?
A list of the Health Canada approved vaccinations can be found here COVID-19 Vaccines: Authorized vaccines – Canada.ca.
10. What if an employee intends to get vaccinated, but will miss the deadline?
Any CORD employee that is not Fully Immunized by November 28, 2021 or has not provided proof of being Fully Immunized will be required to comply with COVID-19 rapid antigen testing requirements at their own cost.
11. If an employee has already had COVID-19, are they considered fully immunized in accordance with the COVID-19 Immunization Policy?
No, to be considered fully immunized employees must have:
• received two doses of a vaccine considered valid by Health Canada in a two dose COVID-19 vaccine series or one dose of a vaccine considered valid by Health Canada in a one dose COVID-19 vaccine series; and
• had fourteen days elapse since the date on which the person received the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine considered valid by Health Canada of a two dose series or one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine considered valid by Health Canada in a one dose vaccine series.
12. What happens if an employee is not fully immunized by November 28, 2021?
Employees who are not fully vaccinated by November 28, 2021 will need to comply with ongoing COVID-19 rapid antigen testing requirements at the employee’s own cost.
13. What if an employee cannot get immunized?
Employees who are not able to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine for a documented medical exemption or reason related to a protected ground set out in the Alberta Human Rights Act, can request accommodation through the Human Resource department.
14. What if an employee chooses to not get immunized?
Employees who decline the vaccine or decline disclosure of immunization status will need to submit ongoing COVID-19 rapid antigen testing results within 72 hours of the start of shifts, at the employee’s own cost, on their own time, starting on Monday, November 29, 2021.
15. What if an employee does not comply with the policy?
Any employee refusing to comply with this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.
16. What if an employee falsifies information?
Any employee providing false or misleading information, may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal.
17. Is the COVID-19 Immunization Policy going to change in the future?
The policy will be monitored throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to be determine if or when changes are made.
18. What other new workplace safety measures is CORD considering and/or implementing?
The City will continue to closely monitor its COVID-19 risk mitigation strategy and the evolving public health information and context, to ensure that it continues to optimally protect the health and safety of employees in the workplace and the public that they serve. If it is determined that additional precautions are necessary, CORD may decide to deploy new measures to protect employees and the public from COVID-19, and may amend this policy accordingly and/or
communicate the required precautions to impacted employees.
19. Does being fully immunized exempt employees from pre-shift symptom screening and other workplace controls (wearing a mask, physical distancing, frequent hand sanitizing, etc.) while in the workplace?
No. Employees who are fully immunized or who have an approved exemption are still required to adhere to all other City of Red Deer workplace COVID-19 hazard controls. This policy applies an added layer of protection for our City of Red Deer staff, but does not eliminate the risk of spread on it’s own. We will maintain current Provincial and organizational measures in place until further notice.
20. Will the City be offering rapid antigen testing?
The City will not be offering on-site testing.
21. Does the COVID-19 Immunization Policy apply to members of City Council?
No, this policy does not apply to The City of Red Deer Mayor or Council members. Council would need to pass a resolution to impose a policy for themselves.
22. With the upcoming election, when would Council be able to consider implementing a policy for themselves?
As there will be a new Council following the municipal election on October 18, there would not be any consideration of implementing a policy for City Council until the new Council has been sworn in.
Updated 2021 Municipal Election and Referendum Results from the City of Red Deer
Updated unofficial 2021 Election results
Following a recount of two voting stations which had not yet reported results, The City has updated unofficial results to reflect 100% of votes cast. A recount was performed earlier today after an isolated technical issue disrupted results reporting for Advance Vote at the Baymont by Wyndham Red Deer and the Mustard Seed. The recount did not change the outcome of the Election.
Red Deer saw an increase in voter turnout compared to the last Municipal Election. In the 2021 Election, 21,548 out of 71,475 eligible voters, or 30.15 per cent, cast their ballots, including 10,622 during the Advance Vote. This was an increase over 2017, which saw 19,265 of 66,897 eligible voters, or 28.8 per cent, cast their ballots, including 2,639 during Advance Vote.
Unofficial results of the 2021 Municipal and School Board Elections are as follows:
MAYOR FOR THE CITY OF RED DEER
Number of positions to be filled: 1
1 Johnston, Ken 11,611
2 Moore, Jeremy Richard 3,169
3 Buchanan, S.H. (Buck) 3,086
4 Magee, Bradley James 2,049
5 Hickey, Dwight G. 900
6 Allen, James 389
COUNCILLOR FOR THE CITY OF RED DEER
Number of positions to be filled: 8
1 Dawe, Michael 12,141
2 Jefferies, Cindy 11,304
3 Wyntjes, Dianne 8,961
4 Lee, Lawrence 8,310
5 Buruma, Bruce 7,067
6 Higham, Vesna 6,298
7 Barnstable, Kraymer 5,892
8 Doerksen, Victor 5,884
9 Krahn, Chad 5,122
10 Khan, Sadia 5,000
11 Williams, Dax 4,865
12 Somer, Janise 4,809
13 Huizing, Hans 4,687
14 MacDonald, Jason 4,677
15 Curtis, Craig 4,543
16 Olubwale, Sheyi 4,245
17 Barclay, Graham 4,061
18 Lydiard, Nicole (Nikki) 3,725
19 Campbell, Brenda 3,525
20 Harksen, Sarah 3,290
21 Engel, Grace Joy 2,540
22 Ratra, Harish 2,495
23 Spencer-Cook, Lisa 2,468
24 Campbell, Calvin 2,067
25 Milaney, Liam 1,634
26 Larocque, Lindsay 1,362
27 Mihaly, Jozef 1,353
28 Laloge, Ryan Andrew 1,317
29 Chapin, Matt 902
30 Coop, Stephen (Steve) 435
TRUSTEE OF THE RED DEER PUBLIC SCHOOL DIVISION
Number of positions to be filled: 7
1 Manning, Bev 6,074
2 Gould, Matt 5,272
3 Buchanan, Nicole 5,143
4 Macaulay, Dianne 4,781
5 Peacocke, Cathy 4,775
6 Sommers, Angela 4,581
7 Watters, Jim 4,473
8 Tweedle, Jaelene 4,185
9 Peters, Paul 3,892
10 Warkentin, Reg 3,550
11 Parisian, Meagan 3,358
12 Elliott, Kari 3,274
13 Davies, Nathan 3,082
14 Grills, Terri 3,024
15 Chapin, Matt 1,653
16 Swarek, Mark 937
TRUSTEE OF THE RED DEER CATHOLIC SEPARATE SCHOOL DIVISION, RED DEER AREA WARD
Number of positions to be filled: 5
1 Watson, Anne Marie 3,169
2 Pasula, Kim 2,956
3 Hollman, Murray 2,923
4 LeGrange, Monique 2,546
5 Leyson, Cynthia 2,489
6 Mariani, Vanessa 2,209
The Red Deer Catholic Separate School Division’s QEII Ward and Highway 11 Ward were both unaffected by the recount, as the two voting stations affected were within the Red Deer Area Ward. Unofficial results for the QEII Ward and Highway 11 Ward remain unchanged.
Official election results for the Municipal and School Board Elections will be announced at 12 noon on Friday, October 22.
The City also hosted a Senate Election and two Referendum questions on behalf of The Province. Updated results noted below are unofficial results for Red Deer voters only; official results from all Alberta voters will be calculated and confirmed by Elections Alberta at a later date.
ALBERTA SENATE ELECTION
Number of positions to be filled: 3
CANDIDATE RED DEER VOTES
1 Pam Davidson 7,951
2 Erika Barootes 7,227
3 Mykhailo Martyniouk 4,896
4 Kelly Lorencz 3,002
5 Doug A. Horner 2,945
6 Ann McCormack 2,475
7 Nadine R. Wellwood 2,464
8 Karina Pillay 1,959
9 Rick Bonnett 1,837
10 Duncan Kinney 1,777
11 Jeff Nielsen 1,510
12 Sunil Sookram 1,229
13 Chad Jett Thunders Saunders 1,004
REFERENDUM QUESTION 1: EQUALIZATION
1 Yes 13,980
2 No 6,393
REFERENDUM QUESTION 2: DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME
1 Yes 11,523
2 No 9,580
Mayor Ken Johnston wins big. Jefferies, Buruma, Barnstable, and Doerksen join council
Results from Elections.RedDeer.ca
A new era begins with Mayor Ken Johnston at the helm after an overwhelming victory for Johnston as he outpaced all his competition combined, picking up over 50% of the votes cast in the Mayoral Election.
In the ultra competitive race for council seats, Michael Dawe led the way while Cindy Jefferies breezed back onto council picking up the second highest number of votes. After Dianne Wyntjes, newcomer Bruce Buruma managed to pick up the fifth spot, squeezing between incumbents Lawrence Lee and Vesna Hingham. Former Red Deer Rebel Kraymer Barnstable worked his way onto council finishing seventh. Victor Doerksen has successfully re-entered political life. The former Red Deer South MLA edged out 21 other candidates for the 8th spot on City Council. Chad Krahn, Sadia Khan, Dax Williams, Janice Somer, and Jason MacDonald lead the pack of newcomers who didn’t quite break through in this election.
Matt Gould made a great impact with voters catching a seat on the Red Deer Public School Board in a very competitive election.
And Monique LaGrange is a new Red Deer Ward representative on the Board of Trustees for Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools.
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