Alberta Premier Danielle Smith is once again pursuing legislative protections for the unvaccinated after retracting the campaign promise earlier this year in place of a public health review panel.
On the Shaun Newman Podcast, Smith confirmed her government is reviewing potential revisions to the Alberta Bill of Rights. “[It] can be strengthened to make sure people have the choice to make their own medical decisions,” she said.
Alberta’s Public Health Emergencies Governance Review Panel tabled its final report on November 15 into the province’s management of public health emergencies.
Panel chair Preston Manning delivered over 90 recommendations for consideration after Smith asked for a detailed review of the Public Health Act and its implementation in January.
Premier Danielle Smith https://t.co/Wg6KaWVfYO
— Shaun Newman Podcast (@SNewmanPodcast) December 18, 2023
Among the recommendations included the need to strike a balance between protecting residents from harm and defending Charter rights and freedoms.
“The biggest recommendations [Manning] made were under the revisions of the Alberta Bill of Rights,” claimed Smith, “which I was pleased to see.”
“Amend the Alberta Bill of Rights and Alberta’s Employment Standards Code and Health Professions Act to protect the rights and freedoms of all Albertans, including workers and healthcare professionals, and the freedom of expression during public emergencies,” the report said.
“We don’t want freedom of speech being infringed during times of crisis, and make sure we don’t have bank accounts frozen,” Smith told the podcast host.
Manning told reporters on November 15 that he hopes the province will adopt these recommendations to be better equipped to cope with future emergencies, and the impacts on Albertans – “their personal livelihoods, civil liberties, and mental health can be mitigated to the greatest extent possible.”
New Alberta Premier Danielle Smith says when addressing the unvaccinated, “they’re the most discriminated against group that I’ve ever witnessed in my lifetime.”
— Rebel News Canada (@RebelNews_CA) October 11, 2022
This is a developing report.