Brantford Police Service Officer Ismael Berruda stood behind his gloved hands at the front desk of the small plaza, already half empty, while an employee waited to fill out a schedule for this week’s meeting of police commissioners. “We are expecting an influx of calls tomorrow,” Berruda said. “When the schedule is live, more people are going to call.”
The scheduling system was the most visible manifestation of the struggle Toronto police faced as the city sought to enforce a mandatory measles vaccination law. Ontario’s Progressive Conservative government ended its challenge in court to the province’s existing vaccination law just hours before the law was set to take effect, and the timing was anything but ideal. To comply with the new law, police officers at all police stations and border booths across the province had to collect vaccination records from all passengers and submit them to local health officials.
But the challenge did not end with the regulation going into effect. Under the new law, police could hand the vaccines and vaccination records back to an individual visitor with no penalty, so long as the vaccine had been received as required. Toronto Police recently suspended a handful of officers for not complying with the mandatory vaccination law, but officers who were caught and found guilty face up to two years in prison. The six Toronto police officers on suspension will not be suspended retroactively — their suspensions started long before the new law came into effect. And none of those suspended are subject to legal action.
Read the full story at The Globe and Mail.
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