Prince Edward Island — Starting June 5, Health PEI will be requesting the vaccination records of anyone in a vehicle with a New Brunswick licence plate crossing to the Island via the Confederation Bridge or the ferry. The news comes after a measles outbreak in Saint John, N.B.
To date the outbreak has affected at least 12 people with countless others possibly infected throughout New Brunswick and other parts of the Maritimes.
Anyone who tries to cross the strait without checking in at the new “vaccination annex” risks a fine ranging from $50 to $1,000 per person.
“Residents of New Brunswick who do not have their up-to-date vaccination card or do not have proof of an up-to-date MMR shot will be escorted to the vaccination room,” explained Health Minister James Aylward. “There they will get their shots before being allowed to set foot on our beautiful red dirt.”
Alternatively, tourists will be welcome to turn around and visit one of the many attractions the rest of the Maritimes has to offer. “However,” continued Aylward, “they WILL still be responsible for the $47.25 bridge toll or the $67.50 ferry toll depending on their point of crossing, should they choose not to visit our little island.”
While some residents of New Brunswick dislike this initiative, Islanders are more than happy that the government is taking measures to curb a possible measles outbreak at home.
“My kids have their shots, but what about the BABIES!?” implored Karen Gallant of Summerside. “Kids who are too young to get vaccinated could catch a disease from those crazy anti-vax mainlanders!”
Signage has begun popping up on the New Brunswick side of the bridge as far out as Cap-Pelé. It can also be seen at the Wood Islands ferry landing.
“We’ve even updated 511, the tourist line,” concluded Aylward. The PEI Department of Health and Wellness anticipates a net of $2.6-$4.1 million will be raised by the fines resulting from this initiative that will be put toward hiring some doctors for rural clinics throughout Prince Edward Island.
“It looks like this outbreak was a blessing in disguise,” added Gallant. “With all the money raised stopping measly New Brunswickers I’ll be able to see a psychiatrist or get an abortion if I need one!”