SHA clears up confusion around affidavits and seeking exemption from Sask. COVID-19 vaccination policy

With some residents in Saskatchewan going to extraordinary lengths to avoid being vaccinated for COVID-19, the Saskatchewan Health Authority issued the following statement Friday morning, clearing up why affidavits are not valid when it comes to receiving exemption from current vaccination policies.

“Immunization in Saskatchewan is voluntary. Although the Proof of Vaccination public health measure that went into effect onto October 1 provides restrictions to the ability of unvaccinated residents to access events, public spaces or their places of work, these are not regulations, bylaws or orders under The Public Health Act, 1994 that require Saskatchewan citizens to be immunized.

As well, the Disease Control (COVID-19 Measures) Amendment Regulations, 2021, section 25.5 clearly states that evidence of being vaccinated or evidence of a valid negative test necessary to enter certain places “is not to be interpreted as making immunization mandatory.”

Some individuals choose to interpret the public health measures and the above regulations as a mandatory immunization policy, and have gone to the trouble of securing affidavits objecting to immunization. Some Commissioners of Oath in Saskatchewan are also charging a fee to submit these affidavits for processing.  As immunization is not mandatory, exemption is not required and these affidavits serve no purpose.

The Saskatchewan Health Authority requests that any individuals considering submitting an affidavit in response to COVID-19 immunization do not do so. Affidavits are not entered into any health database and will be destroyed on receipt.

Note that while vaccination itself is not mandatory, proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test result continues to be required in Saskatchewan for public access to a range of businesses, event venues, as well as for all Government of Saskatchewan ministry, crown and agency employees. Those electing not to get vaccinated are responsible for the costs associated with tests.

View this PSA on the Saskatchewan Health Authority website: https://www.saskhealthauthority.ca/news-events/news/legal-affidavits-not-necessary-record-immunization-objections.”

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