WATCH: Family evicted from Ronald McDonald House talks about their emotional ordeal

The Furgason family, including their four-year-old son Jack — currently undergoing cancer treatment at the BC Children’s Hospital — were given three weeks‘ notice to vacate Vancouver’s Ronald McDonald House (RMH) based on their vaccine status.

Father Austin, mother Lindsey, Jack and their two-year-old son Lewis had been staying at the RMH since October but with the update to the RMC BC & Yukon COVID-19 policy, all visitors, guests and staff are required to be fully vaccinated to stay at the house.

Austin took to Facebook with a recorded interaction with administration at the house and the post went viral. The family saw an overwhelming amount of support including a GoFundMe page that now sits just shy of $173K.

But the swell of media coverage — including coverage in the US from Fox News and other popular podcasters and radio hosts and from the UK news site Daily Mailpolarized views on the issue which brought the “hate,” said Austin.

RMH BC & Yukon released a statement to the Western Standard that said:

“On the recommendation of our local public health unit, the 14-member Board of Directors made the decision to mandate vaccinations for everyone working, visiting, or staying at RMH BC & Yukon to ensure we continue to meet the highest standards of health and safety and protect the vulnerable population of sick children we serve in congregate settings and limit the spread of COVID-19 and its variants,” said RMH BC & Yukon in a statement to the WesternStandard.”

RMH also indicated its team was in contact with the family to support “arrangements for alternative accommodations.”

Some are applauding RMH for its policy aimed at keeping at-risk patients safe while others have slammed the charity for being discriminatory and heartless for leaving families in need without a place to stay.

The Furgason family has been advised the Easter Seals House has accepted them and will soon be moving their family of four to the new location just down the road from RMH.

The Western Standard had the opportunity to connect with Austin for an exclusive update on the family’s emotional ordeal.

Melanie Risdon is a reporter with the Western Standard

Reporter (Alberta)

Melanie Risdon is an Alberta Reporter for the Western Standard and Alberta Report based in the Calgary Headquarters. She has over 20 years’ experience in media at Global News, Rogers and Corus.

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