By Sarah Tone, Communications Coordinator

Canada Games Council Statement on the Removal of the Policy on Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccines for 2023 Canada Winter Games

The Canada Games Council (CGC) has removed its Policy on Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccines for accredited individuals ahead of the upcoming 2023 Canada Winter Games in Prince Edward Island.

The decision was made following a review of the policy alongside the Chief Public Health Office of Prince Edward Island, and in consultation with government, provincial/territorial team and national sport organization stakeholders and the 2023 Canada Games Host Society.

Although COVID-19 vaccination is no longer required by the CGC for accredited individuals at the Canada Games in 2023, it is strongly recommended. Individuals should verify with their respective provincial/territorial teams or organizations for any independent policies that may be in place.

The 2023 Host Society is also removing its mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy for staff, contractors and volunteers.

The Chief Public Health Office of PEI recommends that all participants and attendees at the 2023 Canada Winter Games be up-to-date with their COVID-19 vaccination series, including a booster dose within the past 6 months. This recommendation also applies to all routine vaccinations, as well as seasonal influenza.

Public health authorities emphasize that vaccination continues to be a key component in the prevention and transmission of communicable diseases and reduces the burden of
severe illness.

Since being implemented in November 2021, the vaccination policy has been under continuous review, in consultation with Host Societies, Games stakeholders and regional public health authorities as the pandemic has evolved. All accredited athletes, coaches, managers, technical officials, participant assistants, venue pass holders, mission staff, guests and media were subject to this policy.

The CGC will continue to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic alongside the 2023 Host Society and our key stakeholders. The 2023 Host Society is actively working with the Chief Public Health Office of PEI on infectious disease prevention and control strategies.

The 2023 Canada Games Host Society, CGC, and all Games participants will comply with any applicable requirements, regulations or mandates that may be implemented by the Chief Public Health Office of PEI in order to protect the health and wellbeing of everyone involved and deliver a safe and successful Canada Winter Games in 2023.