Municipal employees who have not provided proof of vaccination or who have not been granted a medical or human rights accommodation will be terminated, Windsor city council said.
The city said it has taken the "difficult but necessary"step to ensure continued municipal service delivery. This decision means there will be two key dates for undeclared or unvaccinated city staff to be aware of.
As of Jan. 4, 2022 employees will need to provide proof of a first COVID-19 vaccination. On Feb. 1, 2022 staff must provide proof of a second shot or they will no longer be employed by the city.
On Sept. 16, Windsor city council adopted a vaccination policy that required all staff to provide proof of vaccination status or to apply for and obtain a medical or human rights accommodation by Nov. 15.
The city said a significant amount of training and education activities were undertaken to help respond to any questions or concerns regarding vaccine efficacy and safety; however, about seven per cent — fewer than 200 staff remain unvaccinated or undeclared.
As it moves toward the key vaccination dates, the city said remaining staff will be redeployed as needed, and temporary resources will be activated to ensure that the workload of individuals on unpaid leaves of absence will be completed.
According to the city, terminating those individuals who were non-compliant with the vaccination policy will make way for the hiring of new staff to fill the roles.
New hires are required to comply with the council's vaccination policy as a condition of their employment, the city said.
"It is our hope that we can welcome back those impacted individuals as soon as possible, but operational requirements will force us to fill vacancies to ensure that we can deliver the high-quality public services that Windsor residents and businesses expect," chief administrative officer Jason Reynar said.
The city said non-compliance on the part of Transit Windsor staff has already led to an unavoidable reduction in transit service, which takes effect Nov. 22.
Other municipal services ate at risk for disruption, as fewer staff are available to manage during the course of regular absences, illness, and scheduled holidays, the city said.