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October 30, 2013

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Arbitrator upholds mandatory flu shot policy

BURNABY—The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) is disappointed by the October 23 arbitrator’s ruling on mandatory flu shots for health care workers.

“Our members are professionals and should be able to make up their own minds about their personal health and its impact on service, so we’re disappointed by this ruling,” said Troy Clifford, Health Care Sector Coordinator for CUPE. “Regardless, we will respect the ruling and encourage our members to follow the policy.”

The arbitrator sided with the health authority policy that requires immunization against seasonal influenza for all health sector workers. Workers refusing to get a flu shot must wear a mask at all times at work during the declared flu season or risk termination.

CUPE welcomes the arbitrator’s rejection of the workplace snitching policy that required health care workers to report fellow workers whom they suspected to be non-compliant. The arbitrator also ruled that it was a privacy breach to circulate immunization status reports of employees in the workplace.

Download the ruling.

View the Health Sciences Association of BC’s backgrounder.

View Health Canada’s Guidelines.


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