Airdrie-East MLA Angela Pitt pledges to get vaccinated
Airdrie-East MLA Angela Pitt says she "fully intends" to get vaccinated when she is able. (File photo)
CALGARY -- After earlier saying it was a health matter too personal to publicly disclose, Airdrie-East MLA Angela Pitt — who has encouraged Albertans to "do your research" when it comes to vaccines — says she "fully intends" to be vaccinated against COVID-19 when she is able.
Also serving as deputy speaker in the provincial legislature, Pitt was part of a group of more than a dozen UCP MLAs who signed a letter saying the province shouldn't return to Phase 1 of restrictions earlier this month.
Asked during a Tuesday press conference announcing a new interchange whether she intends to get vaccinated, Pitt answered that she would "choose not to disclose that information."
Just over an hour later, she posted on Facebook that she "fully intends" to be vaccinated when her time in line comes.
Airdrie is currently considered a COVID-19 hot spot by Alberta Heath with 336 active cases.
Asked about her stance on restrictions, Pitt said on Tuesday that she is "in favour of restrictions that make sense to combat the COVID-19 crisis that we find ourselves in."
"I think our government is trying to do its best job in balancing lives and livelihoods and the premier has stated over and over again. Sometimes there's a difference of opinion in how that goes and sometimes," she said. "I speak on behalf of my constituents who have questions about some of the restrictions that do or do not makes sense and it's simply a fact finding mission."
Pitt added she thinks the province has done "pretty good job overall mostly in maintaining lives and livelihoods."
"I would like to make it very clear I am in no way shape or form advocating for anyone to break any of the rules that are in place," she said.
Premier Jason Kenney and Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw have repeatedly advocated for Albertans to receive a vaccination as soon as they are able.
Albertans born in 1981 and earlier are eligible for the AstraZeneca vaccine. Those age 12 to 64 with underlying health conditions, along with healthcare workers and staff at shelters and correctional institutions are also eligible to receive a vaccine.
A lack of information, said Pitt, is behind some of the consternation when it comes to supporting the restrictions. Phase 1 means dine-in service is banned at bars and restaurants, however outdoor seating is allowed, along with takeout. Indoor social gatherings are prohibited and outdoor gatherings are limited to 10 people.
Weddings are capped at 10 guests and funerals have a maximum of 20. Places of worship are limited to 15 per cent of capacity.
Albertans are encouraged to wear a mask while in public when distancing isn't possible.
"I represent a number of constituents that haven't quite received the information that they need for some of these restrictions to make sense," she said.
"For example, a gym in particular, requires double the amount of occupants to carry on in a physically active way than it would when you had one trainer with six participants, versus one-on-one trainer, we now have 12 people in a gym as opposed to six people overall. These are the types of questions I'm hearing over and over again."
Alberta announced another 1,539 cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, and with 20,721 active infections, it is closing in on the record set during the peak of the second wave.
The positivity rate of 11.3 per cent reported on Tuesday is the highest of the pandemic.