Even though the government announced they were suspending some vaccine mandates, Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos says they need to “transition” away from ‘fully vaccinated’ meaning two doses, suggesting ongoing booster requirements in the future.
“What we also know from Dr. Tam and every other expert on COVID-19 is that two doses still protects significantly well against severe disease and death. [But] two doses are not enough now to protect against infection and transmission,” Duclos said during today’s press conference.
“And that is why we are transitioning now to an up-to-date vaccination definition of what it means to be adequately protected against COVID-19. Fully protected with two doses doesn’t work anymore.”
Following this announcement, the question, then, is what purpose does re-defining the term ‘fully vaccinated’ serve if nearly all vaccine mandates have been lifted? After all, besides personal choice and your opinion on whatever protection the vaccine does or doesn’t confer, the term ‘fully vaccinated’ only has meaning within the context of restrictions and requirements.
This, of course, suggests that the Canadian government isn’t quite done with mandates.
Indeed, other ministers all but explicitly stated they would return this Fall: that’s why they’re calling the temporary end to the travel ban and federal mandates a “suspension” and not an outright “repeal.”
“If the situation takes a turn for the worse, we are prepared to bring back the policies necessary to protect Canadians,” said Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs Dominic LeBlanc.
However, should the federal government mandate boosters come Fall, it isn’t clear how many Canadians are willing to comply this time around.
Currently, only 48.6 per cent of the population have received the booster dose, and this figure has practically flatlined, with fewer and fewer Canadians rolling up their sleeves as time goes on.
Moreover, it’s hardly encouraging that the federal government has essentially conceded that vaccine mandates and restrictions aren’t necessary — especially after they failed to prevent Trudeau’s active COVID case from entering Canada.
Doing a 180 on this position appears untenable. But as with the first vaccine mandates, it’s not impossible.