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'They have no choice in this': Henry urges people not to get frustrated with employees checking vaccine status

The BC Vaccine Card program is now in effect.
On Sept. 13, 2021, Dr. Bonnie Henry said that businesses have no option regarding the BC Vaccine Card and have "suffered the most" during the pandemic. 

B.C.'s top doctor says that it "stuns and saddens" her that people are treating employees in local businesses poorly due to the BC Vaccine Card program.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry told reporters Monday (Sept. 13) that businesses have no option in this matter and have also "suffered the most" during the pandemic. 

"People who work there are deserving of respect, and they're deserving of our care and following the rules," she said. "They have no choice in this." 

The health officer stated that she is saddened that people would find it "acceptable" to take out their frustrations with the vaccine card program on people working in these businesses. She added that people could support local businesses by getting takeaway if they decide not to get vaccinated. 

"Don't take it out on the businesses, take it out on the virus," she said. "Taking it out on businesses and health-care workers is just wrong and unnecessary." 

Henry added that she hopes people who have registered for the program can "proudly share their vaccine card." 

Since the BC Vaccine Card was announced on Sept. 7, more than 2.2 million people have obtained their cards.

New data shows unvaccinated people are driving serious COVID-19 infections in B.C., despite that group comprising a small segment of the overall population. 

Those suffering with the most severe COVID-19 infections in B.C. are occupying beds in hospitals' intensive care units. The number of people in those wards rose by four over the past three days, to 139. Of those, 121, or 87 per cent, are unvaccinated, whereas only about 14.2 per cent of B.C.'s population that is eligible to be vaccinated is unvaccinated.

With files from Glen Korstrom