OTTAWA – The Ottawa Police Service (OPS) announced it is implementing a mandatory vaccination policy for its staff.
Last Friday (Oct. 29) OPS board chair Coun. Diane Deans and OPS Chief Peter Sloly made the announcement in separate press releases.
“Today, I join Ottawa police Chief Peter Sloly in announcing the OPS will be implementing a mandatory vaccination policy,” Deans released in a statement. “As the chair of the OPS board (OPSB), I share the opinion all eligible OPS members should be fully vaccinated. This measure will ensure public confidence in the OPS. The mandatory vaccination deadline of Jan. 31, 2022 will allow OPS to continue their vaccination efforts while mitigating any potential consequences of an understaffed service on emergency response time.”
Earlier Friday, Sloly released his own statement.
“The safety of the people of Ottawa is our number one priority,” Sloly said. “It is with those guiding principles in mind that I am announcing the OPS will be instituting a mandatory vaccination policy for all members effective Jan. 31, 2022. Today (Oct. 29, almost 84 per cent of OPS members are fully vaccinated.”
All employees will have until Jan. 31, 2022, to complete their two-dose vaccination (or receive a formal exemption in line with Ottawa Public Health guidelines).
The OPS will continue to regularly test unvaccinated members and will offer educational resources and on-site vaccination opportunities prior to the deadline. The cost of testing will not be borne by the public.
“The health and safety of the people of Ottawa remains our top priority,” Deans said. “I urge all eligible Ottawa citizens, including members of the OPS, to get their COVID-19 vaccines. Together, we can continue to keep our city safe and I am pleased to have worked closely with Chief Sloly over these past few days to bring about this positive change to the policy.”