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SLOBODIAN: Pallister’s opening plan still taking Manitoban’s freedoms away

The ‘freedoms’ Pallister is granting rely almost entirely on vaccinations, strengthening his plan to introduce controversial immunization cards




Premier Brian Pallister has benevolently decreed he’s loosening COVID-19 restrictions Manitobans have long endured.

Let freedom ring! 

Not so fast.

The ‘freedoms’ Pallister is granting rely almost entirely on vaccinations, strengthening his plan to introduce controversial immunization cards.

This plan has earned him condemnation from the Manitoba Human Rights Commission.

Pallister, flanked by Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin, announced health order changes at a press conference Wednesday.

Some restrictions will be loosened effective Saturday in the province’s COVID-19 reopening plan.

Pallister will allow people, but not a lot of people, to go to church, salons, gyms, and restaurants.

Manitobans will once again be free to worship their God and attend pow wows – only under Pallister’s terms. 

Up to 25 people may attend indoor services, if they wear masks. Outdoor services allow for 50 people, no matter how big the parking lot or field may be. Social distancing between households applies.

Hair salons and barbers can open – by appointment only because any walk-in will surely be COVID-19 infected – to 50% capacity, but retail businesses only 25% up to 250 people.

Restaurants and bars can fling open their doors to welcome a 25% capacity inside, 50% capacity outdoors. But only fully vaccinated people from different households may dine at the same table indoors. 

Outdoor dining allows eight people per table, even from different households, vaccinated or not!

There’s more good news.

People will be able to attend large-scale performing arts and sporting events, but only if the events are first approved by Manitoba Public Health. Criteria for approval remains a mystery. But attendees must be vaccinated. 

How to determine who is vaccinated in restaurants and at sporting events wasn’t revealed, but certainly points to immunization cards.

Manitobans will also be granted the privilege of having 10 people on their private property, but only outdoors.

Residents of personal care homes and congregate living facilities will be able to participate in social activities. But if grandma isn’t vaccinated, she’s banished to more painful isolation in her room. And she can’t have visitors unless they’re vaccinated.

The number of Manitoba COVID-19 infections is steadily declining, currently standing at 55,467 cases, 52,478 recovered, and 1,129 reported deaths. 

Pallister said the restrictions are being loosened a week earlier than planned because vaccination goals have been surpassed with 71% of Manitobans having received their first COVID-19 shot, and 27% their second dose.

“After nearly a year and-a-half of fighting COVID-19, it’s time for Manitobans to start to get some of their freedoms back and enjoy this beautiful summer. It’s what we all want to do. Manitobans have earned that right,” said Pallister.

“Manitobans will be able to resume some of the activities they’ve missed and see the people they love more frequently.”

Did Pallister loosen restrictions early to deflect negative attention from his immunization card scheme announced earlier in June?

“We need to see what the reopening plan is going to say and if it specifically cites use of the immunization card as a factor,” he said at the time.

So much for his Health and Seniors Living Minister Heather Stefanson saying in February that employers and other third parties must not request proof of vaccination.

Pallister said he was “cognizant” that rights and freedoms should not be taken away from people, but is proceeding with taking rights and freedoms away, anyway.

Further COVID-19 freedoms, implementing the next phase in a three-part plan, hinge on how many people get their second shot.

This brilliantly divisive move will pit those vaccinated against those who numerous reasons choose not to be vaccinated.

It’s already been happening. The bullying mobs physically attack people, many with exceptions for health reasons, not wearing masks that increasing evidence shows don’t offer protections from COVID-19.   

The Manitoba Human Rights Commission raised alarms.

“Let’s be careful about putting up barriers that may exacerbate challenges,” said acting HRC director Karen Sharma.

The HRC commission issued a press release on the heels of Pallister’s immunization card announcement.

It warned that requiring people to provide proof of vaccination for work, access to public services or housing is potentially discriminatory against age, disability, religious convictions, political belief, and social disadvantage.

It isn’t alone. Almost 20 states in the U.S. have banned vaccine passports, like immunization cards, on the grounds that they go against an individual’s right to choose.

The HRC has been flooded with calls from confused Manitobans concerned about Pallister’s disregard for rights and freedoms.

People who choose to get the vaccine are exercising their rights and freedoms.

People who are genuinely afraid of the experimental vaccines, especially considering numerous reports about serious side effects including heart inflammation and blood clots, are also exercising theirs.

One man shouldn’t have the power to arbitrarily take anyone’s rights away.

Slobodian is a Western Standard columnist based in Manitoba

Linda Slobodian is the Manitoba Senior Columnist for the Western Standard. She has been an investigative columnist with the Calgary Herald, Calgary Sun, Edmonton Sun, and Alberta Report. lslobodian@westernstandardonline.com

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  1. Left Coast

    June 24, 2021 at 9:46 am

    Premier Pallister & his Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin are still in the Dumb Lane . . . after a 16 months of this nonsense they have learned absolutely NOTHING.

    Too bad Brian was not smart enough to call Gov Noam of South Dakota a few hundred miles south of Winnipeg. Too bad brainless Brian doesn’t understand that likely 1/3 of the Manitoba Population today have Natural Immunity from coming in contact with the Wuhan Virus. Far better than any vaccine according to Experts.

    Canadian Premiers have all turned out to be complete Failures on the Virus File . . . why do Canooks Elect some of the stupidest amongst us to lead them?

  2. K

    June 24, 2021 at 8:34 am

    I’m pretty sure this creature is wearing human skin. At the very least, there’s no soul in that flesh bag.

  3. Pamela Bridger

    June 24, 2021 at 7:49 am

    Isn’t it nice that Brian decides what is best for Manitobans. I’m sure Baal Gates is pleased, very pleased.

  4. Dominic Ieraci

    June 24, 2021 at 7:39 am

    this dictator is even worse than POS kenney, if that’s possible. We need a revolution in this country.

  5. berta baby

    June 24, 2021 at 3:46 am

    Time for people to tar and feather these tyrants … shows how China actually is the one running this donor card country

  6. Steven Ruthven

    June 23, 2021 at 7:00 pm

    One man shouldn’t have the power to arbitrarily take anyone’s rights away. True statement.

    To many Dictators in Canada, to many. Starting at the highest level of government with the China loving idiot. Take a breath of fresh air Manitoba & kick your Premier dictator & his government out as we plan to do with Kenney in 2023. Go Wildrose.

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Independent Alberta MLAs call for emergency debate on forced vaccinations

And the pair said they will not be revealing their own vaccination status, calling it a personal issue




Alberta’s two Independent MLAs are asking for an emergency debate in the Legislature over the issue of mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policies, especially for health workers and the RCMP.

Drew Barnes, MLA for Cypress-Medicine, joined his colleague Todd Lowen, MLA for Central-Peace-Notley in making the call to Premier Jason Kenney.

And the pair said they will not be revealing their own vaccination status, calling it a personal issue.

Barnes said he was particularly worried about the impact on the RCMP, especially in rural detachments where he claimed few officers had been vaccinated.

More than 33,000 RCMP officers and support staff have signed an open letter to RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki opposing mandatory vaccinations.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said all federal workers, including the RCMP, must be vaccinated of face job consequences. But government memos say two-thirds of the civil service could be exempt.

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Vax deadline for BC health-care workers looms overhead

In BC, roughly 5,500 unvaccinated health-care workers will be stripped of their jobs on October 26 if they do not get their first shot.




Health-care workers have been praised for their efforts surrounding COVID-19 for nearly 20 months, however, the ephemeral display of gratitude comes to an end tomorrow.

On October 26, roughly 5,500 unvaccinated health-care workers in British Columbia will be stripped of their jobs, as set forth in a public health order.

The order demands workers provide proof of having received one dose of vaccination against COVID-19 by the aforementioned date.

If they get their first shot before November 15, workers will be permitted employment seven days afterwards, provided they follow extra safety precautions until they get a second dose — which must be administered within 35 days of the first.

“We’re hopeful, of course, that people will move to get vaccinated and comply with the upcoming order,” said Health Minister Adrian Dix.

The roughly 5,500 employees do not include the unvaccinated long-term and assisted living facility workers who were forced out of their jobs by the province on October 12.

Similar policies have been rolled out across the country, but not without resistance.

In August, Alberta Health Service (AHS) announced that all employees, volunteers, and contracted health-care providers must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Last week, the deadline was pushed until November 30.

Similarly, Quebec extended its proof-of-vaccination timeline for health-care workers by one month, with the new deadline falling on November 15.

BC’s deadline — which looms a mere hours away — seems to be fixed in its place.

“The government forcing health-care workers to become vaccinated is really problematic because — for one reason — these are the people most likely to have natural immunity,” Dr. Steven Pelech, chair of the Scientific and Medical Advisory Committee at the Canadian Covid Care Alliance told the Western Standard.

“This is the way the health-care system treats them… a year ago they were heroes for helping save lives, now they are discarded for being unvaccinated.”

Reid Small is a BC correspondent for the Western Standard

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Chu sworn in as Calgary Ward 4 councillor

Chu was sworn in by Court of Queen’s Bench Justice John Rooke. Earlier Calgary mayor-elect Jyoti Gondek had said she would refuse to swear Gondek in over his actions in 1997 with a 16-year-old girl.




Embattled Calgary Coun. Sean Chu has been officially sworn in again to the represent the area despite allegations of a 24-year-old sex scandal that erupted just before election day.

Chu was sworn in by Court of Queen’s Bench Justice John Rooke. Calgary mayor-elect Jyoti Gondek earlier said she would refuse to swear Gondek in over his actions in 1997 with a 16-year-old girl.

Gondek did not even mention Chu’s name during the ceremony.

In a media scrum following in the swearing-in ceremony, Gondek said council will be focusing on looking at the biggest priorities for each councillor in each ward and which councillor will be serving on the various committees, boards and commissions.

When asked why she chose not to swear councillor Chu in, Gondek said, “I didn’t feel it was appropriate for me to swear him in.”

“I’m focused on working with new members of council and one that have returned and letting them enjoy this day of being sworn in. All of us are incredibly proud of what we have accomplished and we are looking forward to celebrating this day as ours. So I’m choosing to focus on that today,” said Gondek when asked if she plans to take Chu up on his invitation to speak with him in person about the resurfaced allegations.

“The future will dictate that. Today I’m incredibly focuses on my family and my collegues who’ve achived a great success,” Gondek said about meeting with Chu at a later date.

Gondek became the first female mayor of Calgary in history. Eleven new councillors and two former ones were also sworn in Monday.

Calgary Mayor Jyoti Gondek was presented with the Chain of Office by her husband Todd. Justice John Rooke is on the left.

The Chu allegation involved an incident where he met the girl at the King’s Head Pub. After hitting it off, the pair agreed to meet later when Chu was off-duty and in civilian clothes.

The pair went to Chu’s house where he admits they engaged in consensual sexual foreplay. The girl then asked Chu to drive her home, which he did.

The girl later filed a complaint alleging Chu sexually assaulted her.

According to documents obtained by the Western Standard, Chu’s accuser said he had sexually assaulted her while holding a gun to her head.

However, Insp. Debbie Middleton-Hope, the presiding officer at the disciplinary hearing in 2003, said testimony from the then 16-year-old minor was not credible and not to be believed.

“I find Const. Chu to be forthright in his description of the details and I find his evidence to be believed,” said Middleton-Hope, a well-respected, now-retired, Calgary policewoman, in transcripts provided to the Western Standard.

“Under cross-examination (the woman) had difficulty in recalling pertinent details,” said Middleton-Hope.

“I find her evidence not to be believed and I was not able to consider her evidence when deciding a sentence.”

Middleton-Hope also confirmed there was no evidence that would have indicated Chu was aware the woman was underage stating, “several witnesses said [the girl] appeared to be 19 to 21 years old.”

Although allegations of sexual misconduct were thoroughly investigated and dismissed over the investigation, Chu had a letter of reprimand added to his file for discreditable conduct for caressing the accuser’s leg while on duty and was ordered to undergo six months of ethics training.

Gondek and Premier Jason Kenney, along with most of the incoming council have called for Chu to resign.

Chu offered to meet with Gondek in person to discuss the situation and has vowed not to resign.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean any harm,” Chu told the Western Standard in an exclusive interview on Tuesday.

“I have always told the truth. My reputation is important to me and now my family is hurting,” said Chu.

Chu is now looking at his legal options and a possible defamation suit over some of what he called “false reporting.”

Melanie Risdon is a reporter with the Western Standard

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