Fired first responder organizes powerful empty boot protest at Alberta legislature

The boots left at the legislature represented a cumulative 12,000 years of service to the Alberta health-care system.

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Hundreds of pairs of shoes and work boots were laid on the steps of the Alberta Legislature Building Monday morning, representing the health-care workers and first responders put on unpaid leave — constructively dismissed — because of the vaccine mandate in Alberta.

All health-care workers and contractors for Alberta Health Services have to produce proof of vaccination to continue employment, regardless of immunity obtained through prior infection.

The boots at the legislature represented a cumulative 12,000 years of service to the Alberta health-care system. Many of the boots were placed with notes that detailed the stories of the people who once wore them and the work they did for their communities.

The woman behind the visual depiction of the human cost of the health-care vaccine mandate, Kate King, is a former first responder who spent years taking care of the people in her community. She has worked through annual flu seasons, and she knows how to protect herself from blood and airborne illnesses when responding to emergencies.

But she is out of work now after her religious exemption to the mandatory COVID vaccination requirement was denied by her employer — Alberta Health Services.

Outrageously, the same religious objection that prevents her from taking the COVID-19 is the same one accepted by her employer to exempt her from the MMR vaccine. Neither science nor her religion has changed; however, the politics of the vaccine seems to be different.

Tuesday, the Alberta government introduced a slate of new restrictions meant to stem the spread of the new omicron variant of COVID, ostensibly to prevent the health-care system from being overwhelmed, a goal seemingly incompatible with the government's recent firings of nearly 1,700 frontline workers, a number a recent analysis by True North tallied.

Kate King is one of a handful of Alberta firefighters taking legal action against the Alberta government's vaccine mandate at no cost to them through a partnership with the registered Canadian charity, The Democracy Fund. To help these frontline heroes in their fight for their jobs, privacy and freedom, please visit

Donations qualify for a charitable tax receipt.

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  • By Ezra Levant

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