We have written to the National Advisory Committee on Immunization to request that truck drivers, couriers (UPS, Purolator, etc.), railroaders and workers in warehouses and sorting centres receive priority access to a covid-19 vaccine.

Dear Dr. Quach-Thanh, 

I hope this letter finds you and your team safe and healthy. 

On behalf of Teamsters Canada, I write to you today as the voice of thousands of essential workers in both the rail and road transportation industries across the country. 

We were very pleased to hear that vaccination prioritization went first and foremost to healthcare workers, other care industry workers, and the most vulnerable of our population, such as the elderly, those in long-term care (LTC) homes and hospitals. I cannot express the relief our members, especially in the LTC facilities are feeling as the rollout of the vaccine is implemented. 

Having said that, there are a number of other workers who have continued to risk their health and that of their families during this pandemic by continuing to serve Canadians and running the railways and delivering our goods to hospitals, businesses and homes. In fact, they are hauling the vaccines themselves and therefore play a crucial role in the supply chain on the road to recovery from this pandemic. They have not neglected their duties to us and we must not neglect our duty to protect them. 

I understand how difficult it must be to balance the seemingly diverging and numerous needs and respond to the demands and pressures you must be under. Our members are not only essential because they serve in the public interest, but they also ensure that our economy does not collapse in the process. 

Therefore, by way of this letter, I formally implore you to ensure that railway workers, truck drivers, couriers and those supporting their work in the warehouses and sorting centres, are among the essential workers at the top of the priority list for immunization as soon as possible. 

Thank you for your contribution and your leadership. Wishing you a happy and healthy holiday season. 

 François Laporte 
Teamsters Canada