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“It’s embarrassing from our point of view,” said Charlene Nero of the Laborers’ International Union of North America Local 3000, which represents workers at home. “They are precarious workers. These are not Cadillac positions. These are housekeeping positions. “
The union has filed complaints with Ottawa Public Health and the Department of Health about the alleged incident. It also filed a complaint with the retirement home, stating that it had not given the vaccine adequately and had not been given a safe job.
The Stirling Park Retirement Community, which had COVID-19 outbreaks during the pandemic, was among the high-risk pensions in Ottawa that were prioritized for vaccines. It was also one of the first to receive Moderna when they arrived in town.
Riverstone Retirement Communities said it “helps prioritize residents, staff, and key caregivers to provide the safest possible environment for our residents.”
On February 7, according to the letter from staff, some staff and caregivers were told that five doses of Moderna vaccine would be left after residents received their first doses. Three health care workers, a key caregiver, and a housekeeper all raised their hands for the remaining vaccines.
Staff said the fifth person on the list – the housekeeper – was later pushed so that an executive’s wife could be vaccinated. The woman is not an essential caregiver and does not work or volunteer at home, according to the union, and should not have been home, let alone on the list, to get a vaccine.