Barrie Police, South Simcoe Police aren’t requiring officers to get a COVID-19 vaccine yet

Neither police service making it a requirement; not the case in Toronto

Local police officers won’t be required to get the shot just yet, even as their colleagues to the south are told to roll up their sleeves.

On Tuesday, the Toronto Police Service announced it would require all its uniformed and civilian staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by September 13. The Barrie Police Service (BPS) tells Barrie 360 it has yet to make it mandatory for its members just yet.

A statement from Barrie Police indicates, while not mandatory, the overwhelming majority of BPS members have already received their vaccines. “The safety of our members and the community that we serve is our primary concern, and we are following Public Health guidance on vaccinations, as well as the use of PPE and other public health measures,” reads the BPS statement. “We continue to review our approach to ensure we are acting on the best public health advice and the best interest of our members, our partners and our community.”

Similarly, the South Simcoe Police Service (SSPS), patrolling Innisfil to Bradford, has yet to make it a set-in-stone rule either. “We are reviewing our policy regarding mandatory vaccinations and will be guided by public health recommendations and workplace safety legislation,” said SSPS Chief Andrew Fletcher in an email to Barrie 360. “Since the outset of the pandemic, we have implemented policies regarding the use of personal protective equipment (PPE), physical distancing, and sanitization of our buildings, vehicles and equipment.”

“We will continue to do whatever we can to ensure the safety and well-being of our members, their families, and the community that we serve,” he concluded.

In Simcoe-Muskoka, 81 per cent of the population 12 and up has received their first vaccine, while 73 per cent of the eligible population has gotten both shots.