The Town of Milton will emphasize education when it comes to the enforcement of COVID-19 vaccine certificates. The new guidelines requiring residents to present proof of vaccination became effective as of September 22, 2021.
Residents are expected to present their vaccine certificates, as well as provincial government ID in order to enter various non-essential businesses including restaurants, nightclubs, and gyms/ health clubs. "If we receive a complaint about a business or organization alleged to not be in compliance with vaccine certificate entry regulations, our municipal law enforcement will respond," Strategic Communications Director Carrie Beatty said in an email. The Town has already been actively screening at some community, and recreational centres.
The province echoes the education first approach. They expect enforcement to be handled through municipal by-law enforcement officers, as well as inspectors. "Police officers are not responsible for enforcing the proof of vaccination program, Ministry of Health spokesperson Alexandra Hilkene said in a recent email.
Health Minister Christine Elliott recently has advised businesses to call 9-1-1 if they get to a point where they feel threatened. The province is planning to introduce a new 'enhanced vaccine certificate' in the form of a smartphone app beginning October 22, 2021.
Ontario reported an increase of 613 cases of COVID-19 over yesterday, 350 of which are from unvaccinated Ontarians. The Region of Halton reported an increase of 75 cases. 19 of these are from Milton, with two schools, and one workplace designated as having outbreaks. 82% of eligible Halton residents are completely vaccinated. Visit the Region of Halton's website to book a vaccine appointment.
Laura Steiner, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Milton Reporter, Milton Reporter