Rombouts wants Lambton to back call to end vaccine passports

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Warwick’s mayor wants to “return Ontario to a place where everyone is treated as equals”

Warwick Mayor Jackie Rombouts wants the province to end the vaccine passport system. And she’s asking Lambton county councillors to back her call.

During the November council meeting, Rombouts will ask councillors to consider a motion which calls on the province to end the program aimed to stop the spread of COVID-19 at higher risk settings. Indoor settings such as restaurants, bars, arenas and concert halls must ask for proof of vaccination before letting patrons in.

In introducing the resolution, Rombouts said Ontario has surpassed the original vaccination rate target to reopen Ontario and “the vaccine is working to reduce hospitalizations and deaths.”

Rombouts says the vaccine passport is “is creating undue hardships to thousands of small businesses, municipalities, health care facilities and families across Ontario.”

The mayor, who gained attention on social media recently when she called the vaccine passport discriminatory and vowed not to frequent businesses which followed the provincial laws, says “the people of Ontario are intelligent and autonomous beings capable of researching and deciding what health care is right for themselves and their children.”

Rombout’s motion calls on the province to “remove all mandatory requirements to show proof of vaccination across all sectors in Ontario and return Ontario to a place where everyone is treated as equals.”

It was a point she drove home during the Oct. 6, county council meeting while questioning Lambton’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Sudit Ranade.

“Does it make sense for a government to mandate that everybody has to do what they say, given that for some people, the risk of COVID is maybe not as bad as the risk that they could potentially have from the vaccine? …Should it not be left to the individual to make that decision for themselves?”

Ranade said yes, but not always adding there has to be “strong and solid justifications” if you are.

He went on to say; “Out of all of the interventions that we have had for COVID masking, testing screening… vaccines are the ones that have the greatest level of evidence behind them, they have the highest quality of evidence behind them. And we know that they make the biggest impact out of all of the other interventions. So, if there’s going to be one intervention that you do actually have requirements for … I would say it should be vaccinations over the other things.”

In the last few months, Rombouts has frequently spoken about her concerns about the vaccination and the passport system, however she is always in the minority at county council, with typically only two other politicians expressing similar views. They are Sarnia City/County Councillor Margaret Bird and Oil Springs Mayor Ian Veen.

Typically, when councils pass a resolution, it is circulated to other municipalities for support, in the hopes of giving more weight to the argument.

Warwick Mayor Jackie Rombouts’ resolution which will be debated in November reads;

  • Whereas, the vaccination rate in Ontario has surpassed the original target required by the provincial government to reopen Ontario and
  • Whereas COVID-19 vaccine is working to reduce hospitalizations and deaths in Ontario.
  • Whereas the COVID-19 vaccine does not promote promise to prevent the transmission of the COVID-19 virus.
  • Whereas the Ontario government’s requirement to produce proof of vaccination at select locations and places of employment is creating undue hardships to thousands of small businesses, municipalities, healthcare facilities and families across Ontario.
  • And whereas the people of Ontario are intelligent and autonomous beings capable of researching and deciding what health care is right for themselves and their children.
  • Therefore, we the council of County of Lambton requests that the provincial government of Ontario remove all mandatory requirements to show proof of vaccination across all sectors in Ontario and return Ontario to a place where everyone is treated as equals.