Public Health recommends postponing the return to the office

(Montreal and Quebec) The emergence of COVID-19 cases has prompted Public Health to recommend employers to postpone the return of their workers to their offices. For his part, Prime Minister Francois Legault notes that it is up to companies to decide whether their employees will have to provide proof of vaccination to physically return to the office.

Tommy Chouinard

Tommy Chouinard

Julian Arsenault

Julian Arsenault

In the current context characterized by the presence of a delta variable among the population, the Department of Health and Social Services clarified, Wednesday, in a press release, that it would be “wiser to postpone the gradual return of employees to workplaces that began recently.”

He explained that the situation will be reassessed in October.

According to the department, a significant portion of the outbreaks that occurred during the first three waves of the epidemic occurred in the workplace. In addition, “the next few weeks will be marked by the start of the school year, which means increased contacts and an unexpected impact on the epidemiological situation.”

He adds that postponing a return to the office will prevent increased social contact, which is a precaution in addition to vaccination.

On the sidelines of the weekly cabinet meeting in Quebec, Prime Minister François Legault turned himself in to the responsibility of employers when asked if they could request a vaccination passport.

“What public health is recommending is to continue working remotely,” he said. But those who want to return or who want to return for the efficiency of organizing their business, it is up to the business owner to decide how to operate. ”

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The decision by the Department of Health and Social Services was poorly received by President and CEO of the Montreal Chamber of Commerce, Michel Leblanc.

And in a message posted on the social networking site Twitter, he considered that this opinion “leaves you in confusion.”

He asked himself, “Why not encourage the return of dual vaccines?” Why do not you trust the passport of vaccination? inconsistency? “.

as Journalism Last Friday, she revealed, Quebec has already decided to postpone a return to its officials’ office. 60,000 public service employees will not return to the office on September 7 as planned. Treasury Board Chair Sonia Leibel confirmed this on Wednesday. For now, Quebec has set the gradual return of workers from ministries and public agencies until October 4. This date will be reassessed towards the end of September depending on the epidemiological situation.

Quebec currently rejects the idea of ​​compulsory or permissible vaccination for civil servants. “As we speak, these are two options that are not off the table for public service,” Sonia Leibel said during a press conference.

Thursday and Friday, a parliamentary committee will hold consultations “on the mandatory vaccination against COVID-19 for health care workers in the health network and other categories of workers who are in long-term contact with citizens.” Currently, Legault’s government is moving forward with compulsory vaccination of health workers (in both the public and private sectors). They must have received their dose by 1He is October.

Since Quebec went to the green alert level at the end of June, a gradual return to the office, in the public sector as in the private sector, has been possible, although remote work continues. Since returning to the workplace is the responsibility of the employer, many companies experience headaches for days due to the fourth wave and the rise of the delta variable, which is more contagious and more virulent. The public health opinion was eagerly awaited.

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