There are major moral and ethical questions that are linked to the experimental COVID-19 vaccines that have been developed in the United States, and are being pushed on the population.
That hasn’t discouraged some government operations and many private corporations from ignoring them, and threatening under penalty of job loss that workers must take the shots.
But now consumers and employees can fight back.
The Rutherford Institute has posted online a fact sheet on the rights of individuals to refuse such orders, as well as a sample letter to use to inform employers that they cannot have their way.
“For good or bad, COVID-19 has changed the way we navigate the world and the way in which ‘we the people’ exercise our rights. As a result, we find ourselves grappling with issues that touch on deep-seated moral, political, religious and personal questions for which there may be no clear-cut answers,” said constitutional attorney John W. Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute.
“One thing is clear, however: while the courts may defer to the government’s brand of Nanny State authoritarianism, we still have rights. The government may try to abridge those rights, it may refuse to recognize them, it may even attempt to nullify them, but it cannot erase them,” he explained.
One situation involves those with medical conditions, as the Americans with Disabilities Act protects those individuals.
And although legal protections against threats and punishment for not accepting a shot “are limited,” the Institute explains there are rights under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
That insists that employers provide religious accommodations to those who have sincere religious beliefs against receiving vaccinations.
“Title VII further defines religion broadly to include not only beliefs, but also religious practices and observances. As a result, the federal employment discrimination law forbids discharging an employee because the employee chooses to engage in certain conduct, or not engage in certain conduct, that is a part of the employee’s religious beliefs and practices, and holds that someone cannot be discriminated against by their employer based on their religion unless the employer cannot reasonably accommodate an employee’s religious observance or practice without undue hardship on the conduct of the employer’s business,” the institute reported.
“Although there have been very few cases that have dealt specifically with Title VII’s ban on employment discrimination based on religion in the context of religious objections to vaccines mandated by the employer, it appears established that if an employee holds sincerely held religious beliefs in opposition to receiving a vaccination, an employer that has a rule requiring that vaccination must reasonably accommodate the employee’s beliefs.”
The first step is a notice, the institute said.
In the fact sheet Whitehead assembled, it is explained that Supreme Court multiple times as discussed the “right of bodily integrity as grounds for refusing to allow the police to require drunk driving arrestees to submit to blood extractions.”
In fact, the court has found that “conduct ‘involve[s] a compelled physical intrusion beneath [the arrestee’]s skin and into his veins to obtain a sample of his blood for use as evidence in a criminal investigation.
Such an invasion of bodily integrity implicates an individual’s ‘most personal and deep-rooted expectations of privacy.’”
And the advisory page noted, “Whether such a claim of bodily integrity would ultimately prevail in the face of compelled or forced vaccinations would depend on the courts’ balancing of the individual interest versus the state interest. For example, the court has held that the forced blood draw from a drunk driving suspect was not unreasonable, because blood draws ‘are commonplace in these days of periodic physical examination, and experience with them teaches that the quantity of blood extracted is minimal, and that, for most people, the procedure involves virtually no risk, trauma, or pain.’”
One previous ruling allowed forced vaccinations, back in 1905, but even that allowed exemptions for medical reasons. All 50 states now require children to get diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, measles, rubella, and varicella vaccinations, but also offer a variety of exemptions.
But the fact sheet noted, “There is no indication that the courts have upheld the forced administration of vaccines upon a person.”
“It appears established that if an employee holds sincerely held religious beliefs in opposition to receiving a vaccination, an employer that has a rule requiring that vaccination must reasonably accommodate the employee’s beliefs.”
The fact sheet explains it is important to notify an employer and provide written documentation of the religious beliefs that would be violated under a vaccine mandate.
As the Supreme Court has held, “the guarantee of free exercise [of religion] is not limited to beliefs which are shared by all of the members of a religious sect,” the fact sheet explained.
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