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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Legal group to challenge BC vaccine passport mandate

The Canadian Constitution Foundation says the province must exempt those who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons.

A legal advocacy group is launching a legal challenge against the British Columbia Vaccine Passport system, which has failed to grant exemptions for those who cannot be vaccinated due to medical reasons.

Christine Van Gain, director of litigation at the Canadian Constitution Foundation (CCF), said in a press release that the province’s vaccine card system is unconstitutional because it does not allow exemptions for those who have been adversely affected by the vaccine or are in critical medical condition.

“Adverse reactions to a vaccine are rare, but they do occur,” Van Gain said. “It is cruel and unconstitutional to add exclusion and isolation to physical injury for a person who has had, or is likely to have, an adverse reaction.”

Van Gain noted that the vaccine is a “much higher risk choice” for those who have had adverse reactions to their first dose or have a complex medical history.

“For patients like this, they must have a deeply personal trade-off regarding their health,” he said.

“It is inappropriate for the government to try to force a result on the one hand through policies like the Vaccine Passport, which already imposes an additional burden on these vulnerable people.”

Under the province’s vaccine mandate, British Columbians must show proof of receiving two full doses of a COVID-19 vaccine in order to access certain public events, services and businesses such as restaurants, bars, gyms and some indoor locations. Post-secondary students will also need to show their vaccine passports to apply for student accommodation.

These requirements are temporarily stable until January 31, 2022, but could be extended, health authorities said. The BC government has said there are no exemptions for those who cannot be vaccinated due to medical reasons.

The CCF is compiling separate lawsuits to include the policy in its legal challenges. According to the CCF, the individuals included a teenage girl who had a heart attack after receiving the first dose of the Covid-1 vaccine and was ineligible for the second dose.

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Another case is of a pregnant woman who suffered a nerve damage after taking the first shot of the vaccine and her hand became partially numb. Her neurologist advised against a second dose, due to the risk of further nerve damage that could affect her unborn baby.

A BC government communications director said the medical exemption was “a very difficult decision made by public health”, and that if individuals were unable to get vaccinated, they could seek alternative services such as ordering deliveries from restaurants instead of eating private meals.

“There will be an evacuation process in extremely rare situations involving the office of an individual doctor and the provincial health officer. However, these cases will be extremely rare, “Eileen Masell told The Epoch Times in an email.

A list of legal contradictions and suspensions for the Covid-1 vaccine was sent on 15 September from the College of Physicians to BC’s physicians and surgeons, the province’s regulator of the practice.

The CCF said its legal liability would prompt the provincial government to create a “clear exemption” for certain medical conditions. It would require an accessible process for patients and their doctors to receive a medical exemption that does not require public health approval for individuals with unique conditions.

“Our hope is that the government will make the process of medical exemptions easier and simpler,” said BC lawyer Geoffrey Trotter, who is representing the CCF in the case.

“Those who need medical accommodation are already facing considerable challenges in their daily lives, the government will not make their lives more difficult,” Trotter said in a press release.

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Andrew is a Toronto-based reporter.

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This News Originally From – The Epoch Times

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