May 16, 2022 6:13 pm

A province in Canada will launch a “significant” tax for the unvaccinated

QUEBEC.- Quebec, the second most populated province of Canada, plans to force adults who refuse to be vaccinated against Covid-19 to pay a “health contribution” to an extent that is likely to spark a debate on individual rights and social responsibility.

The prime minister of the province, Francois Legault, He said the proposal, the details of which were still being finalized, would not apply to those who cannot get vaccinated for medical reasons.

Unvaccinated people are a financial burden for others, for which the province’s Ministry of Finance is determining a “significant” amount unvaccinated residents will have to pay, Legault said, adding that that amount would not be less than C $ 100 (US $ 79.50).

Governments around the world have imposed movement restrictions on the unvaccinated, but few have imposed fines, so a blanket tax on all unvaccinated adults could be a rare and controversial measure.

While such a tax could be justified in the context of a health emergency, said Carolyn Ells, a professor of medicine and health sciences at McGill University, she will depend on the specifics to see if she circumvents eventual judicial strategies.

But Ells expressed surprise that the government was giving such a “dramatic” step now, when there are options, such as further expanding the compulsory nature of vaccines.

The provinces of Canada are facing a exponential increase in Covid-19 cases that has forced tens of thousands of people to isolate themselves and that has overburdened the healthcare sector.

The highly transmissible omicron variant made restrictive measures difficult to stop the spread and health experts emphasize the importance of getting vaccinated two and three times.

Quebec has been one of the most affected, regularly recording the highest daily count of coronavirus cases of all provinces and leaving several thousand healthcare workers out of work.

“The vaccine is the key to fighting the virus. That is why we are looking for a health contribution for adults who refuse to be vaccinated for non-medical reasons, “said Legault.

Canada also experiences a rise in cases due to the omicron variant

Legault said that although the province has about 10% of unvaccinated people, they represent about 50% of those in intensive care units.

Legault and his party, CAQ, face provincial elections in October.

On Monday, the Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, He said the federal government had secured enough doses of the Covid-19 vaccine for all eligible Canadians to receive a booster and a fourth dose. read more

Last month, Quebec said it had “no choice” but to allow some essential workers to continue working even after testing positive for COVID-19 to prevent staff shortages from hampering its healthcare services. It has also imposed restrictions on meetings.

Reuters Agency

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