New Brunswick

Seafood producer brings COVID-19 vaccines to its workers

Captain Dan's Seafood held vaccination clinics in its plants in Cap-Lumière and Bouctouche last week, vaccinating more than 100 employees.  

Company held vaccination clinics in its processing plants

Captain Dan's seafood factory in Cap-Lumière. (COURTESY)

A New Brunswick seafood producer is making sure its employees have every opportunity to get vaccinated against COVID-19 by bringing the vaccines to the workplace. 

Captain Dan's Seafood held vaccination clinics in its plants in Cap-Lumière and Bouctouche last week, vaccinating 122 employees.  

Human Resources manager Kim Wilson said the company had been asking Public Health for permission to hold an onsite clinic for a couple of months.

"Right now we're in a really busy season, so for employees to have to displace from the workplace and go to an external clinic and if you don't have a vehicle, that presents another challenge," Wilson said.

"So just the fact that we as the employer offered this to them in a very convenient way, I think was really important not only to us as the employer, but to the employees." 

Once the company had permission from Public Health, it only took a few days to organize the June 3 clinics. 

Kim Wilson is the HR manager at Captain Dan's Seafood. (Courtesy)

McGrath's Pharmacy for Life, based in Hartland, operated the clinics. The pharmacy has been doing onsite vaccination clinics, such as the flu shot, for years and has done a handful of clinics throughout the province for the COVID-19 vaccinations.

Wilson said it was a seamless process. 

"Our job was to get the employees registered on a portal and get their names. And then McGrath Pharmacy came and did the set up, provided the nurses."  

 Many of the workers live in rural areas and Wilson said the clinics made it easy for them to get vaccinated. 

"What we heard from some of our local workforce is that, 'I've been meaning to get it, but I just haven't found the time and you know, when I'm working and then by the time I get home at night and trying to schedule it', so having it available for those that had been waiting where they were just like, 'Oh, great, if work can offer it, I'm absolutely going to go and get the vaccine'." 

Convenience matters

Luke Leslie, who owns Pharmacy for Life, which operated the clinics, said convenience is a major factor in people deciding to get vaccinated.

"Something that the flu program every year has proven is that as vaccines are made more accessible you usually have a higher turnout and a greater acceptance." 

Leslie said a familiar place also helps. 

Wilson said the company played music and tried to make the atmosphere fun during the clinic.

"The only thing that I was told by our workers that I was missing was suckers at the end," she said. 

Wilson said the company is working on plans for another clinic so employees can get their second shot. This time, she will have suckers to hand out. 

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