- You must be vaccinated to use municipal buildings in Rankin Inlet.
- The Hamlet council unanimously approved the proof-of-vaccination bylaw on October 25.
- As of November 30, it will apply to all municipal buildings in Rankin Inlet, from the arena to the community hall.
“When people come in, they will be asked to show proof of vaccination,” said Darren Flynn, senior administrative officer at the hamlet.
He went on to say that Hamlet will not be scanning anything or retaining any information. Instead, vaccinated people will be able to wear vinyl bracelets to show proof of vaccination in the future.
“Then, the next time someone wants to enter one of our buildings, all they have to do is flash that wristband,” Flynn explained. The bylaw only applies to municipal buildings; it does not apply to stores or private facilities. Unvaccinated people will be allowed to enter the municipal office and make payments or apply for permits.
“People will still have access to those services,” Flynn said, noting that they would be required to wear masks. He stated that there had been a few written submissions and Facebook comments criticizing the decision.
“At the end of the day,” Flynn said, “council has chosen to take this step.”
On the third reading of the bylaw, one change was to make exceptions for people with immune deficiencies or those unable to be vaccinated due to medical reasons. Those individuals will have the option of writing to Flynn directly to request an exemption. According to Flynn, they will be required to provide valid documentation demonstrating that they have an actual medical condition that prevents them from receiving vaccinations.
“That doesn’t mean that exemption will be granted automatically,” he explained. “However, it means that we will consider it.” He stated that it is not an option for those afraid of needles or taking a stand on another level.
“The Department of Health will discuss with the Minister of Health once the new cabinet is selected and the minister receives their portfolio,” Sommerville stated in an email before the cabinet’s appointment.