TORONTO — Sunwing will require all new and existing employees across all Canadian divisions to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
The move is in line with Sunwing’s commitment to health and safety, and also adheres to the federal government’s Aug. 13 announcement that all employees in federally regulated sectors, including airlines, must be vaccinated against COVID-19 by the end of October.
Sunwing employees will have until Sept. 13 to provide proof of their full vaccination status or their intention to vaccinate. For employees who are not yet vaccinated and plan to get vaccinated, they will also be required to provide proof of their full vaccination status no later than Oct. 18.
“The health and safety of our employees and customers is our top priority at Sunwing,” says Stephen Hunter, CEO of Sunwing Travel Group. “Vaccinations are proven to be the most effective tool in reducing the spread of COVID-19 and protecting broader public health. As a Canadian company, we want to continue to do our part to help end this pandemic, protect our families and those vacationing with us, and to support the travel industry’s full recovery.”
Sunwing’s new policy will apply to employees across all Canadian divisions, including those who will be working from home on a part-time or full-time basis, as per vaccination guidance from the Public Health Agency of Canada for the entire population. Accommodations will be made for those with qualifying medical or religious exemptions.
Sunwing’s commitment to health and safety in the workplace and throughout the customer’s vacation experience includes Safe with Sunwing program was developed last summer under the advisement of global healthcare leader Medcan. In addition to advising on the Safe with Sunwing program, Medcan experts led by Dr. Peter Nord, Chief Medical Officer at Medcan and Sunwing’s acting Chief Medical Advisor, also provide ongoing support for employee and customer health and safety.
Sunwing notes that it was the first Canadian airline to use AEGIS Microbe Shield treatment on all its aircraft and has hosted vaccination awareness sessions for employees in the winter and spring, with additional sessions planned for the coming weeks.
Sunwing is the latest Canadian airline to confirm mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for its employees. Porter Airlines was first out of the gate on Aug. 18, announcing that aligning with its Sept. 8 restart of service, team members must be fully vaccinated or present a negative COVID-19 test administered within 72 hours of the start of their shift. On Aug. 25 Air Canada announced that 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. All new hires must also be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.