Christine Sorensen, the now former president of British Columbia Canada Nurses’ Union, has resigned citing personal reasons, and that she wished to pursue other opportunities. The announcement comes one week after the Union refused to implement a mandatory vaccination policy.
The mandate refusal came after the province announced that all healthcare workers must take the vaccine if they want to remain employed.
According to the union, although they strongly encourage vaccination and the implementation of safety measures, those who are unvaccinated still represent a significant amount of workers across the province, and mandating vaccination “force members to leave, further exacerbating a staffing shortage that is increasingly unmanageable.”
“This reality can pose desperate staffing challenges in worksite where staffing is already stretched extremely thin […] There is potential for a significant number of health-care workers to be removed from an already depleted workforce. Taking nurses away from the bedside will have serious impacts on patient care. […] We continue to be open to discussing any and all ideas the government and health authorities may have to develop both interim and long-term solutions to the implications a mandatory vaccination strategy could have on staffing levels.”
According to the Canadian Federal government, there are currently more than 7 million Canadians who have yet to receive any dose of the COVID vaccines. This represents approximately 20% of the population. Many of these millions of unvaccinated Canadians are doctors, scientists, and nurses.
Vaccine hesitancy among healthcare workers is nothing new and was even emphasized at the 2019 Global Vaccine Safety Summit put on by the World Health Organization (WHO).
Professor Heidi Larson, a Professor of Anthropology and the Risk and Decision Scientist Director at the Vaccine Confidence Project stated that there is a “very wobbly health professional frontline that is starting to question vaccines and the safety of vaccines.” She has in fact published multiple studies that clearly document vaccine hesitancy among healthcare workers.
This hesitancy manifested quite early on in the pandemic. For example, a survey conducted at Chicago’s Loretto Hospital in January showed that 40% of healthcare workers at that hospital would refuse vaccination. With mandates now, this number likely changed however.
Further, 50% of healthcare workers and hospital staff in Riverside County were refusing to take the COVID-19 vaccine.
In light of all the hesitancy, some healthcare companies are allowing their workers to show proof of a previous infection in order to remain employed. This move is based on the emerging science regarding the power of natural immunity.
The takeaway here is that hesitancy is not something of bad, uncaring, and conspiratorial individuals. For many, their scientific opinion does not align with forced vaccination, while for others, they feel it’s within their right to refuse what is done to their body by government.
This article (B.C. Nurses’ Union President Resigns: Nurses Says No To Mandatory Vaccines) was originally published on The Pulse and is published under a Creative Commons license.