Canadian Federal Employees Launch Legal Challenge Against C19 Vaccine

Recently, a group of hundreds of Canadian federal employees, called United Servants, launched a legal challenge to the government’s vaccine injunction. The trial will reportedly take place on November 28, at the federal Public Sector Labour Relations Board based in Ottawa. The board is an independent quasi-judicial tribunal that administers the public service and parliamentary grievance adjudication system, including the resolution of layoffs, among other priorities. In October 2021, the Government of Canada issued a vaccine mandate requiring all federal workers, except for those with approved exemptions, to receive two doses of vaccine or be suspended without pay. United Servants was founded last October and is made up of staff from various federal departments, including the Canada Revenue Agency, Service Canada, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and the Canada Border Services Agency. At the time, they had intended to file for an injunction in December 2021, but did not follow through, because a federal court judge had already ruled that federal employees opposing the vaccine mandate should file a grievance as their case was considered a labor dispute. After months of grievance proceedings went back and forth, many of United Servants’ complaints were referred to the commission for adjudication, which began processing them in May of this year. Desgagné, who has worked as a public servant for 28 years, said that the aim of the court challenge is to “get a court ruling which will make it impossible for the government to ever again implement such a bad policy.”

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