Yukon Weekly

Staffing shortages caused by the pandemic are causing problems in Canada’s supply chain

Supply chains in Canada are being hampered by pandemic-related staffing shortages

Key sentence:

  • Omicron’s rapid spread is causing staffing shortages in various industries across the country as COVID-19 infections among workers rise.
  • The virus-related staffing shortages occur when many sectors of the Canadian economy are already experiencing difficulty filling positions.

As COVID-19 infections among workers rise, Omicron’s rapid spread is causing staffing shortages in various industries across the country, causing supply chain disruptions.

The impact of the Omicron variant is hitting certain industries hard, from city services to transportation and grocery stores.

Infections have forced the retirement of hundreds of police officers and paramedics in Quebec.

“We’ve never had so many paramedics out at once,” said Benoit Garneau, a spokesperson for Urgences-Sante, Montreal, and Laval’s ambulance service.

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While paramedics will respond quickly to 9-1-1 calls, those with less urgent matters are asked to wait.

As infections among workers continue to rise, officials in Toronto are drafting a contingency plan to keep essential services running.

“We’re planning for the worst-case scenarios, up to and including illness rates of 50 to 60 percent,” Toronto Mayor John Tory said.

Officials in British Columbia have advised businesses, schools, and healthcare facilities to follow suit, warning that the pandemic may cause up to one-third of employees to become ill.

The virus-related staffing shortages occur when many sectors of the Canadian economy are already experiencing difficulty filling positions.

“Even before the latest variant, Canada had an all-time high in the third quarter, with a million job vacancies across the country,” economist Trevin Stratton told CTV National News.

Furthermore, staffing shortages are now affecting certain supply chains.

Supply chains in Canada are being hampered by pandemic-related staffing shortages
Supply chains in Canada are being hampered by pandemic-related staffing shortages. image from CTV

Exceldor, a poultry supplier, says the shortage has forced it to give thousands of chickens to other processors and will force it to euthanize thousands more due to the shortage.

Some provinces are reducing quarantine periods for fully vaccinated Canadians who test positive for COVID-19 to help alleviate supply chain issues and boost staff.

Quebec became the latest province to do so on Tuesday, reducing the period of isolation for fully vaccinated residents to five days, allowing them to return to work sooner.

According to Sylvain Charlebois of Dalhousie University’s Agri-Food Analytics Lab, this change may help keep essential businesses running and ensure there is enough food and supplies on store shelves.

In an interview with CTV National News, Charlebois said, “Some policymakers are willing to take some calculated risks to ensure that the food supply continues to operate and that Canada remains food secure.”

If supply chains continue to hit snags, experts warn that grocery store prices will rise even more, and more services will suffer.

It all depends, they say, on how long Omicron is a public health concern.

Source-CTV News

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