Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre is demanding an end to the vaccine mandate for military members, but some in his own party admit the situation is more nuanced.
Poilievre’s tweet yesterday came after the federal Liberal government announced they will end COVID-19 vaccine mandates at the border.
That leaves the vaccine mandate for Canadian Armed Forces members as the last remaining one still in place at the federal level.
Chief of the Defence Staff Gen. Wayne Eyre, Canada’s top military commander, signalled back in August the policy would be tweaked but said the mandate was necessary to ensure troops are operationally ready to be deployed overseas.
Tory health critic Michael Barrett said today that, “if there’s a specific operational requirement, that’s one thing,” but added he opposes COVID-19 vaccination being a condition of employment for anyone.
Former party leader Erin O’Toole, who is a military veteran, expressed a similar view earlier in the year, saying that getting vaccinated against COVID-19 was a rule for most in the Armed Forces because they have a duty to serve.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 28, 2022.