The new premier of Ontario Doug Ford is going into battle over vaccines. Unfortunately, he’s in the wrong battle. Vaccinations are the essential means of keeping people safe and healthy and ensuring our communities are properly prepared for major health threats.
The anti-vaccination movement is spreading faster than ever in the past three decades. It is a dangerous and manipulative ideology that damages our society and raises serious public health threats. As such, we must do all we can to prevent people from spreading disease and to keep them protected from potentially fatal illness. That is why keeping our communities fully protected is just as important as keeping our children healthy.
But what is important about vaccines is being overlooked by Doug Ford, who seems to think that there are grounds for vaccinations after all. His concern is that government workers – including hospital workers – might need to get vaccinated, and he wants that to be left up to the discretion of the individual.
If politicians keep putting health and safety first, that would be one thing. But we must not let Doug Ford get away with that. Vaccines are unquestionably proven and safe – and there are other health workers who have said they are glad they got vaccinated. So instead of shirking his responsibility to the people who vote for him, Doug Ford should defend health workers and make them get their shots.
The sad truth is that the Anti-Vaxxers’ agenda requires politicians to reject science. And Doug Ford is no exception. A cynic might argue that there is a greater need than ever for a Prime Minister, an American-style President of the Unions, a Prime Minister, an American-style Prime Minister who is anti-taxpayer.
There is a danger that governments are in danger of losing control over the delivery of health care, as doctors increasingly refuse to work in hospital units or see patients out of sympathy for anti-vaccination advocates. This is not just a problem for Ontario hospitals, but for patients all over Canada. As a patient with an injured arm, I know from experience that it is unreasonable for any doctor, patient or nurse to require a myriad of other tests and tests before starting a treatment.
The Anti-Vaxxers are quite willing to try to kill children
No one should be naive enough to think the new Ontario Progressive Conservative government will stand up to the Anti-Vaxxers. The new Premier is a small-c conservative. And no major health issue, from the flu and mental health to cancer and obesity, can be seen as a positive or positive political trade-off.
Which is why the new Ontario Liberal government should not be in the business of insisting that government workers get vaccines, so long as they have high-profile patients such as Mr Ford and his family.
There is a serious problem with anti-vaccination ideology, and we need to be in the business of making it pay off.
How is that doing so? Well, the Anti-Vaxxers are quite willing to try to kill children – which is why the government and its health workers should insist that workers get immunized. As a sitting premier, Doug Ford should be especially worried about the threat posed by the anti-vaccination movement and he should be prepared to do all he can to ensure that it does not reach Canadian children.
He may be lost in a snarl, but he has a responsible job to do as Premier of Ontario. And it’s a job that should not be undermined by his right-wing ideology.