VACCINE VERIFICATION: REGULATIONS AND PROTECTIONS SUMMARY FOR EMPLOYERS AND BUSINESS OWNERS

 

PROOF OF VACCINATION OR NEGATIVE TEST – EMPLOYEES

On October 1, public employers will require their employees to make a choice to show proof of being fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test result. All other employers can voluntarily opt in should they wish to implement a proof of vaccination or negative test policy for employees:

• Employers need to provide reasonable notice of the policy to every worker by:

o personally giving it to the worker

o posting it in the workplace

o posting it online on a secure website to which the worker has access

o providing it in any other manner that informs the worker of the requirements.

• Employers may use a self-declaration process and are not required to collect or retain personal health information. However, employers are required to establish a verification process for reviewing the evidence of vaccination or COVID-19 negative tests provided by their employees and keep this information confidential.

Employers can decide if the costs for testing is the responsibility of the employee, or if the business will cover the cost.

A self-administered take-home rapid antigen test should not be accepted as valid proof of negative COVID-19 results. Individuals requiring a negative test result have several private options on the market that will provide a rapid antigen test or a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for a fee.

PROOF OF VACCINATION OR NEGATIVE TEST – CUSTOMERS AND OTHERS

On October 1, proof of vaccination or negative test will be required for access to the following venues:

• Indoor dining at restaurants

• Nightclubs, bars, taverns and other licensed establishments

• Event and entertainment venues, including conference centres, casinos, movie theatres, concert venues, live-music venues, museums, and indoor facilities hosting ticketed sporting events

• Indoor fitness centres, and gyms

All other businesses can voluntarily adopt this approach if they wish to implement a proof of vaccination or negative test policy for customers. Current public health measures do not require proof of vaccination for the following:

• Business meetings and places of business closed to the general public, unless otherwise directed by the business or employer

• Retail businesses, including grocery stores

• Fast food restaurants offering takeout and delivery

• Health care services, professional services, or personal services

• Hotels or other lodging

• Private gatherings held at public indoor venues, such as weddings and funerals

It is recommended that proof of negative testing should be provided within 72 hours of entry. Businesses requiring proof of vaccination will also require ID from anyone 18 and older. A self-administered take-home rapid antigen test is not accepted as valid proof of negative COVID-19 results. Individuals requiring a negative test result have several private options on the market that will provide a rapid antigen test or a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for a fee.

UPDATED LEGAL PROTECTIONS FOR BUSINESSES

The Saskatchewan Employment Act now provides a legal defense to employers where they are exercising a power in good faith to follow The Employers’ COVID-19 Emergency Regulations. No legal proceedings can be taken against a business or organization acting in accordance with the Act or the regulations.

The Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission has confirmed that vaccine mandates requiring proof of vaccination or negative testing are generally permissible under the Saskatchewan Human Rights Code, 2018. Individuals who are unable to be vaccinated due to a Code-protected characteristics must be reasonably accommodated (i.e. accepted COVID-19 testing).

KIDS ACCESSING BUSINESSES

Youth aged 12-17 will also need to show ID unless accompanied by an adult with proof of vaccination and ID.

Youth aged 12 to 17, visiting a business without an adult, who do not have photo identification will be allowed to present other forms of government issued identification such as birth certificate or health services card.

EXEMPTIONS FROM VACCINATIONS

Vaccinations are not mandatory in Saskatchewan. As such, there are no provisions for legal exemptions – and there is no standard-issue exemption card provided by the province.

Unvaccinated people have the option of providing proof of a negative COVID-19 test to access a business or workplace requiring it.

ACCEPTED PROOF OF VACCINATION

The only acceptable forms of proof of vaccination are:

• A QR code/MySaskHealthRecord vaccine certificate

• Wallet cards received at time of immunization

• A printed copy of your MySaskHealthRecord (MSHR) vaccine certificate (with or without a QR code)

• A screenshot of your MSHR vaccine certificate (with or without a QR code) saved to your device

• An earlier version of your MSHR COVID-19 vaccine certificate

• A COVID-19 vaccine printout from Saskatchewan Health Authority Public Health

BACKGROUND INFORMATION 

Government of Sask Media Release

https://www.saskatchewan.ca/government/news-and-media/2021/september/28/proof-of-vaccination-or-negative-tests–required-broadly-october-1-2021

Human Rights Policy Update

https://saskatchewanhumanrights.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/COVID-19-Vaccines-Vaccination-Mandates-and-Human-Rights_infosheet.pdf

FAQ: Vaccination Requirements in the Workplace

https://publications.saskatchewan.ca/api/v1/products/114928/formats/129917/download

Private Testing Sites

https://www.saskatchewan.ca/government/health-care-administration-and-provider-resources/treatment-procedures-and guidelines/emerging-public-health-issues/2019-novel-coronavirus/testing-information/where

READ THE ORIGINAL DOCUMENT:

https://saskatoonchamber.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/Vaccine-Verification_Chamber-Fact-Sheet-v2.pdf