BRAUN: Stand Firm on Vaccine Certificates, Says HR Specialist

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No shirt, no shoes, no service, everyone knows that sign.


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No vaccination certificate, no service should be that simple.

Whether you have an enhanced Ontario vaccination passport with a QR code or just your old paper copy, showing proof of vaccination is a reality in bars, gyms, restaurants, movie theaters, and countless other places.

Now that most of the official government hesitation appears to be over, the final frontier is having to get your employees to enforce the vaccine requirement in your business.

We’ve all seen enough YouTube images of irate Costco shoppers yelling about their inalienable rights to know that some people can misbehave when asked for their vaccine passport.

The specialists in Peninsula HR Canada can help you train staff to politely request someone’s proof of vaccination, what might be uncomfortable for some workers, how to refuse someone’s entry, and how to alleviate a situation.


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Patrick Stepanian, head of Peninsula HR Canada’s legal team, said there are some immediate things that can be done to protect your employees from being harassed.

Post a notice clearly stating that proof of vaccination is required. If possible, have two staff members work together to ask about the status of the vaccine, because if there is a problem, it helps to have a colleague nearby.

It is also more difficult to argue with two people.

Stepanian says that what is required in all of this is clear communication and the right attitude.

“The staff may be somewhat understanding, but take a clear stance,” he said, adding that even if a medical exemption letter is submitted (which is highly unlikely), the line can still be drawn.

“It is your business, your space. You can explain that you can’t make any exceptions. “


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If there is any problem or confrontation for a vaccine passport, Stay neutral. Keep your distance. Keep your tone calm.

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“You can say, ‘This is our health and safety policy, and we are going to enforce it. Unless you can display a QR code, please continue. ” Be firm, stay on message. “

In many high-stress situations, Stepanian said, one of the parties often just wants to get something off their chest, even if it’s not okay.

“You can let them speak, but just repeat your message. And you can say something like ‘We hope to see you when you have your QR code.’

In its most basic form, he added, “it’s like someone spilled something in your store. You put up a ‘caution: wet floor’ sign, grab a mop and clean it up, because you don’t want to be sued.

“The potential here is that someone is spreading a very contagious disease. You don’t want to expose yourself to liability, so you install the fans, limit capacity, and enforce a vaccine policy. It’s that easy.”



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