City responds to protect citizens and employees from Omicron
CALGARY - Almost two years into the COVID-19 pandemic and Omicron is again challenging our community. The Omicron variant is highly contagious and spreading quickly. Alberta Health is concerned this latest wave could result in more hospitalizations and put more strain on our healthcare system.
The City of Calgary continues working closely with the Government of Alberta to respond to COVID-19. The City’s top priority remains protecting the health and safety of citizens and employees while maintaining essential public services. The City has taken steps to increase access to vaccinations, promote public health measures, and develop business continuity plans to mitigate potential impacts to public services.
“With the highly transmissible Omicron variant on the rise, we must do everything we can to continue to protect ourselves, each other, and the healthcare system,” said Chief Susan Henry of the Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA). “Get vaccinated and if eligible, get your booster shots, wear a mask in indoor public spaces, keep a safe distance from others, and follow the provincial public health orders and municipal bylaws to prevent the spread.”
Maintaining City services
All City business units have business continuity plans in place to address COVID-19 to mitigate any impacts on essential public services. Business units are monitoring and assessing the situation and have contingencies planned.
What The City is doing to keep services operating:
· Three-ply masks were distributed to City employees.
· Employee Vaccination Policy – City employees must get fully vaccinated or participate in rapid testing. Over 93 per cent of employees are fully vaccinated.
· Voluntary rapid testing for vaccinated employees in essential services.
· Enhanced cleaning of facilities and vehicles continues.
· Remote work is mandated for all City employees who can work from home.
Mobile Vaccination Locations
The City of Calgary is extending the successful COVID-19 mobile vaccination program. We are providing first, second and booster shots to adults on a first come, first served basis.
The City partnered with the Industry for Vaccinations, Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services to bring mobile vaccination locations to communities across Calgary to remove barriers and provide convenient access to vaccines. To date, The City’s mobile vaccination program has provided over 4,000 shots.
Locations include public libraries, recreation facilities and shopping malls. No appointment is necessary. Calgarians must bring one piece of identification that proves their age. Check calgary.ca/covid or call 311 for dates, times and locations of the mobile vaccination stations. Please plan to arrive early as the demand for this service has been high over the last few weeks.
Municipal Emergency Plan
The Municipal Emergency Plan remains activated to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, with The City committed to coordinating with Agency members to provide citizens with the information, resources and supports they need. The Vaccine Passport Bylaw 65M2021 and Pandemic Face Covering Bylaw 63M2021 also remain in place.
Vaccine Passport Bylaw
The City of Calgary Vaccine Passport Bylaw 65M2021 requires many businesses and organizations to require proof of vaccination, recent negative COVID-19 test, or valid medical exemption letter to gain entry.
Pandemic Face Covering Bylaw
For the safety and protection of our community and businesses, the Pandemic Face Covering Bylaw 65M2021 requires people to wear a face covering or mask in indoor public spaces and public vehicles.
Community Peace Officers and the Calgary Police Service continue to work together, along with Alberta Health Services, to ensure Calgarians safety through the enforcement of all bylaws and public health orders. Failure to wear a face covering where required can result in a penalty of $500 and failure to display prescribed signage can result in a penalty of $200.