Town of Ladysmith implementing COVID-19 vaccine requirement for staff

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Ladysmith is the latest town on Vancouver Island to announce it will implement a COVID-19 vaccination policy for its staff.

The town said in a news release last week that it will require proof of vaccination for employees, as well as contractors doing business with the town and volunteers, such as members of the public serving on town committees.

The town did not specify a timeline for the new policy, saying only that it would be implemented "in the coming months."

"The COVID-19 pandemic continues to present serious public health challenges requiring community-level mobilization to ensure we are all doing everything we can to protect our family, friends and neighbours," the town's release reads.

Ladysmith says staff who are unable to meet the proof of vaccination requirement will be asked to complete regular rapid testing before work.

The town has 129 employees across five divisions. The town's firefighters are included in that total, but officers from the Ladysmith RCMP detachment are not.

"The town has provided its staff with education and resources throughout the COVID-19 pandemic on the merits of vaccination, as well as implemented additional health and safety measures to protect staff while carrying out their respective duties," Ladysmith said in its statement.