Important for all Defence Team members: Complete your COVID-19 vaccination attestation today
October 15, 2021 - Defence Stories
As mentioned in the October 8 DM-A/CDS message on COVID-19 vaccine requirement for the federal workforce, CDS Directive on CAF COVID-19 Vaccination, and CANFORGEN 149/21 (accessible only via the DWAN or CAF app), all Defence Team members are required to be fully vaccinated.
Both public service employees of the Department of National Defence (DND) and Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members are required to complete a COVID-19 vaccine attestation by October 29, 2021, regardless of their vaccination status. As of today, all Defence Team members now have access to do so.
How do I submit my vaccination attestation?
DND public service employees:
As of October 15, 2021, DND employees have access to confirm their vaccination status in the Government of Canada’s Vaccine Attestation Tracking System (GC-VATS) (Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome are the recommended browsers). All DND employees must complete their attestation by October 29, 2021.
Employees and managers will need to be on the DWAN and have a PKI card to access GC-VATS. For employees who do not have the necessary IT assets (e.g. active PKI Card) to access the GC-VATS system, an alternative paper-based attestation method will be available using a PDF forms (accessible only via the DWAN). The form will follow the same content and format as the online version.
- Staff working remotely will print, complete, scan/take a photo, and send the form back to their manager to complete their attestation.
- Staff on-site will complete the form in-person and provide their signed attestation to their manager, to complete their attestation.
- Managers should review forms to ensure they are complete and submit them to P-OTG.VaccineAttest@intern.mil.ca for tracking and retention. Please contact HR Connect RH (for DND employees only) for any questions.
In both cases, staff can be reassured that their manager will ensure their attestation is received, reviewed and retained in a secure environment.
Prior to accessing GC-VATS, it is very important that DND employees update their information within the TBS Applications Portal (TAP) (accessible only via the DWAN) to prepare for vaccination attestation:
- Ensure that communications are sent to valid email accounts by confirming your TAP profile email under My TAP Profile. DND employees who are not registered on TAP will be asked to provide an email address as part of the registration process.
- Review your profile information and confirm accuracy under MyEmployees. If any of your information is inaccurate, please flag to your manager.
- (Managers only) Update your team information in your MyEmployees list. In the MyEmployees list, managers can click on any team members and update their information as needed (including releasing staff).
Once you’ve confirmed your TAP profile information, login to GC-VATS and declare your vaccination status in 3 steps:
- Review and acknowledge the privacy statement
- Enter your vaccination status:
- Confirm and submit your attestation
*You have an obligation to provide a true attestation. Submitting a false statement would constitute a breach of the Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector and may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination. Attestations will be audited and managers can ask for proof of vaccination at any time.
As of October 8, 2021, CAF members can confirm their vaccination status through a one-time attestation process using MCS – Monitor MASS. All CAF members must complete their attestation by October 29, 2021 and be fully compliant with the policy by November 15, 2021.
CAF members who do not have access to MCS – Monitor MASS, will provide to their supervisor written and signed attestation in paper format, which the supervisor will then ensure is properly entered into the appropriate attestation tracking system.
For more information on how to complete your attestation in MCS – Monitor MASS, please consult the bilingual user guide (accessible only via the DWAN).
What if I’m not yet fully vaccinated?
If you are not already fully vaccinated, you are advised to book an appointment as soon as possible. DND employees can book their appointment through their provincial or territorial health system. The COVID-19 vaccine is available to CAF members from the Canadian Forces Health Services (CFHS) system through their supporting CAF medical clinic. Public health authorities continue to advise that combined with the existing safety measures, vaccination is the most effective tool to reduce the risk of COVID-19 for Canadians.
*Regardless of your vaccination status, you must complete an attestation.
CAF members unwilling to comply with the CDS Directive on CAF COVID-19 Vaccination may be subject to remedial or alternative administrative measures as of November 15, 2021. Public servants who do not attest to their vaccination status, or are unwilling to be vaccinated, will be placed on administrative leave without pay as of November 15, 2021.
What if I’m unable to be vaccinated?
The vast majority of Canadians are eligible to receive the vaccine. In the exceptional case that you are unable to be vaccinated based on a certified medical contraindication, religion, or another prohibited ground for discrimination as defined under the Canadian Human Rights Act, you may request accommodation. All Defence Team members who are requesting accommodation must inform their manager at the earliest opportunity. Managers of public service employees are to consult with Labour Relations. Your manager, in consultation with Labour Relations (for public servants) and the Chain of Command (for CAF members), will then determine and implement appropriate accommodation measures if deemed appropriate. Managers will provide temporary mitigation measures for the Defence Team member while gathering relevant information on both the validity of the accommodation requirement and the appropriate measures.
Requesting accommodation as a DND public service employees:
If requesting accommodation due to a certified medical contraindication:
- The employee must provide documentation from their treating medical physician or nurse practitioner on the grounds for not receiving or for delaying the COVID-19 vaccine.
- There are few acceptable medical reasons for delaying or not receiving the COVID-19 vaccination (e.g., an allergist/immunologist-confirmed severe allergy or anaphylactic reaction to a previous dose of a COVID-19 vaccine or to any of its components that cannot be mitigated, or a diagnosed episode of myocarditis/pericarditis after receipt of an mRNA vaccine), as per NACI Recommendations on the Use of Vaccinations.
If requesting accommodation due other prohibited grounds:
- The manager should request an attestation of the details regarding the prohibited ground(s) of discrimination under the CHRA that render the employee unable to be fully vaccinated.
Requesting accommodation as a CAF member:
As indicated in the Directive, CAF members who are unable to be vaccinated will provide one of three items:
- Forms completed by their personal healthcare providers indicating their certified medical contraindication or disability rendering them unable to be fully vaccinated;
- A sworn attestation containing information about the religious belief that prohibits full vaccination; or
- Attestation of the specific information about how the grounds of discrimination under the CHRA renders them unable to be fully vaccinated.
Remember, we are here to answer your questions. Many answers to your questions on the COVID-19 vaccination policies can be found on the following web pages:
- COVID-19 vaccination for federal public servants
- CDS Directive on CAF COVID-19 Vaccination
- COVID-19 vaccination for federal public service managers
- CANFORGEN 149/21 (accessible only via the DWAN or CAF App)
- COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs
- COVID-19 vaccines for Defence Team members
You may also speak to your manager or submit your questions through the Ask anything: COVID-19 inbox.
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