MONTREAL — With Air Canada’s new vaccination policy, all Air Canada mainline, Air Canada Rouge and ACV employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and report their vaccination status, by Oct. 30, 2021.
The new policy also means all new Air Canada hires must also be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Testing will not be offered as an alternative.
The move is in line with the federal government’s Aug. 13 announcement that all employees of federally regulated industries, including airlines, must be fully vaccinated by the end of October. At the same time the federal government also mandated proof of full vaccination for all air, interprovincial rail and cruise ship passengers, also effective by the end of October.
Air Canada says the new health and safety policy is designed to further protect employees and customers.
Air Canada’s dedication to science-based measures during the pandemic extend back to the early days when the airline was among the first to require pre-boarding temperature screening of passengers, obligatory onboard mask-wearing policies and the use of testing.
In a statement Air Canada said: “While Air Canada will fulfill its duties to accommodate employees who for valid reasons, such as medical conditions, cannot be vaccinated, failure to be fully vaccinated by October 30, 2021 will have consequences up to and including unpaid leave or termination, except for those who qualify for accommodation.”
The company added that it is committed to the continued development and application of new safety measures and processes as they become available that are effective and convenient for passengers. “Such measures are vital to the safe restart of the air transport industry which, apart from enabling Canadians to travel freely, is also an essential driver of economic activity in Canada.”
Last week Porter Airlines announced that, aligning with its Sept. 8 restart of service, all employees must be fully vaccinated or present a negative COVID-19 test administered within 72 hours of the start of their shift.