ttc vaccine mandate

TTC employees who refuse to get vaccinated will lose their jobs on Dec. 31

Public transit employees who don't comply with the TTC vaccine mandate will find themselves unemployed at the end of the year.

As a deadline of Nov. 1 looms for city employees to get vaccinated, the TTC announced it would be extending its deadline from Oct. 30 to Nov. 20 for employees to comply with its mandatory vaccination policy.

TTC employees who are unvaccinated or have not shared their status by the end of the day on Nov. 20 will be placed on unpaid absence until they complete their vaccination course, the TTC said in a statement.

Effective Dec. 31, employees who remain unvaccinated or who have not shared their proof of complete vaccination dosage will have their employment terminated.

"It is unfortunate we have to take these steps," said TTC CEO Rick Leary. "The TTC is an essential service and we need it to be a safe place for everyone. We will be doing everything we can to uphold our core value of safety."

The commission said approximately 85 per cent of the agency's 15,061 active employees have shared their COVID-19 vaccination status, with 89 per cent of them fully vaccinated and 11 per cent with one dose. In total, 83 per cent of unionized employees and 93 per cent of non-unionized employees have shared their status.

As more than 600 employees have received their first vaccine dose in the last few weeks, the deadline to receive two doses (or one dose of a single dose series) has been moved to Nov. 20.

"Safety is always our top concern. Our priority during the pandemic continues to be making sure everyone working at the TTC is kept as safe as possible," said Leary.

Leary thanked employees who have gotten vaccinated and disclosed their status.

"This is an important step in putting the pandemic behind us and ensuring that we are doing everything we can to keep our family, friends and communities healthy," Leary said.

Employees with an approved Ontario Human Rights Code accommodation or medical exemption are not included in this mandate. No decisions have been made yet on how these employees will be accommodated.

If the TTC finds themselves with a staffing shortage on Nov. 21, they are making contingency plans.

To offset potential service disruptions, they may hire more operators, ask recent retirees to come back to work, re-train operators to work across modes and temporarily increase overtime opportunities.

On Nov. 21, scheduled hours may need to be reduced depending on staff availability. But the priority will be to ensure reliable and predictable service continues on the busiest routes at the busiest times of day, the TTC said.

There have been plenty of opportunities for employees to get vaccinated. The TTC has held 46 vaccination clinics for employees as well as customers, and there are many more planned in the coming weeks. More than 8,000 shots have been administered at these clinics.

Lead photo by

A Great Capture

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