Statement on new proposal to mandate proof of vaccination

The Canadian Constitution Foundation is deeply concerned by today’s announcement by Transport Minister Omar Alghabra. The announcement proposes to mandate proof of vaccination for all Canadian air, rail, and cruise ship passengers travelling domestically.

While the CCF strongly supports voluntary vaccinations, government mandated proof of vaccination for domestic travel crosses a bright line. Canadians should not have to demonstrate their vaccination status to travel to see their family members. The policy is unjustified in light of Canada’s rates of vaccination, one of the highest in the world. It creates the absurdity that Canadians will be subject to more stringent requirements to travel from Calgary to Vancouver than from Toronto to Paris.

Joanna Baron, Executive Director, commented: “The government’s motivation in announcing this policy days before the writ is set to drop is clearly to create a wedge issue in advance of the coming federal election. In doing so, they are running roughshod over Canadians’ constitutional rights, particularly the section 6 right to mobility and the section 7 right to security of the person.”

While the CCF would like to study the policy’s details when it is published, on its face it is an unjustified intrusion into liberty and should be unequivocally condemned.

Statement on new proposal to mandate proof of vaccination