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Syed Khan – 07 September 2021,

Twelve Alberta mayors have written a public letter calling for Health Minister Tyler Shandro to bring in provincewide COVID-19 vaccine passport rules. Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson, Beaumont Mayor John Stewart, St. Albert Mayor Cathy Heron, Parkland County Mayor Rod Shaigec, Spruce Grove Mayor Stuart Houston, Stony Plain Mayor William Choy, Devon Mayor Ray Ralph and Morinville Mayor Barry Turner, Sturgeon County Mayor Alanna Hnatiw, Strathcona County Mayor Rod Frank, Leduc County Mayor Tanni Doblanko, and City of Leduc Mayor Robert Young in a public letter sent Tuesday, urged the government to bring in the passport.

They state in the letter that these passports are the best way to compel more people to get vaccinated, end the pandemic and fully reopen the economy.

Quotes from the letter addressed to the Health Ministry:

“I think the general public is very, very, almost overwhelmingly in favor of a [vaccine] passport, I think that a passport mechanism provides a much more strong and relevant incentive than $100 payments to people who have held out so far.” said Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson

Other provinces like Ontario, B.C., Quebec, and Manitoba have implemented such passports, thus allowing only vaccinated people to access non-essential services such as bars, restaurants and sporting events.

However, the mayors are pushing for a passport regulation to curb a resurgence of COVID-19 cases that are now threatening to overwhelm the health system. Patients are being transferred and non-elective surgeries are being canceled across the province to deal with the influx that filled intensive care to 95 percent capacity late last week.

Alberta Health Services said ICUs are now at 87 percent capacity.

Alberta recorded more than 1,200 new cases per day over the last weekend.

Measures taken:

On Friday, Mr. Kenney had announced that $100 will be given to anyone who gets their first or second COVID vaccine from now until mid-October. This lead to a 13 percent increase as reported by the AHS.

The provincewide mask mandate was also reintroduced for indoor public spaces and workplaces with school boards to decide their own plans on masking.

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