Alberta Minute: Vaccine Mandates, Emergency Provisions, and Inflation Takes Off
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
The Alberta Legislature break continues, but the Select Special Child and Youth Advocate Search Committee has a meeting scheduled for today at 11:00 am to discuss the profile of a Child and Youth Advocate position.
The provincial government is considering the legality of mandatory vaccines in certain settings, such as high-risk workplaces. Other provinces, like Ontario, have made the jab mandatory for those who work in education or health care settings. The province's top doctor, Deena Hinshaw, said that any direction on this issue would have to come from the political side of the government. Just as well, since they are the ones accountable to the voters.
- In other health news, health care workers are now under "emergency provisions" which gives AHS the power to mandate overtime, cancel vacations and redeploy frontline health care workers as the number of COVID infections in Alberta continues to grow.
Last Week In Alberta:
In our last weekly email, we talked about skyrocketing power bills. Sadly, that is not the only price increase Albertans are facing, with Statistics Canada reporting inflation has increased to 3.7%. One of the largest drivers of inflation was electricity prices and gasoline prices, which increased 38% year on year. People often ignore the impact of inflation, but if you think about it waws a 3.7% pay cut, it really puts it in perspective!
- Alberta's largest chambers of commerce (Calgary and Edmonton) issued a joint press release, calling for "business-friendly" election platforms. While we agree with many of their suggestions - especially the call to create a competitive finance and taxation system and expand trade and market access, we're opposed to any move towards more corporate welfare or taxpayer-funded subsidies. Far better to cut taxes for Albertans, leaving them with more money in their pockets to spend at Alberta's businesses!
- Finally, in more vaccine news, Dr. Hinshaw announced that temporary COVID-19 vaccine clinics will be coming to schools for grades 7-12. Minors will require parental consent forms to access the shots. The province will not be mandating social distancing, masking, or cohorting in schools, but local boards may set their own rules and many have indicated they will.
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