PART 3: Being able to say "no"
With the imminent arrival of the COVID-19 vaccine in both Canada and the US, many are concerned that these may be mandated, or that the vaccine exemptions for religious and philosophical reasons might be removed.
There are further concerns that even if vaccine exemptions are not removed, there will be other penalties such as the denial of entry into schools, offices, places of worship, stores and even the inability to travel without proof of vaccination for COVID-19.
These penalties may be used as a means to force citizens to comply.
Individuals must be able to conscientiously object to the COVID-19 vaccine or any other vaccine.
Already this summer there was a bill before the Government of New Brunswick to remove religious and philosophical exemptions from vaccines.
In a submission to the New Brunswick government, constitutional lawyer James Kitchen wrote,
“It is a serious intrusion by the state to demand that a person inject a set of substances into their body or the body of their child they do not want or need in order to access basic public benefits. The withholding of government services from citizens who are otherwise entitled to such services in order to compel compliance with government policy represents government overreach for which there is rarely justification in a free and democratic society.”
The Charter not only sets out to protect life, liberty, and the security of person, but must protect Canadians from being coerced by government to make choices they do not want.
Also of concern is the speed at which these vaccines have been produced. This fact alone is raising serious concerns. Before the COVID-19 vaccine, one of the fastest vaccines ever created was the mumps vaccine, brought to market in about 4 years.
LifeCanada has a petition that can be signed which asks government to produce ethical vaccines for COVID-19 and keep exceptions in place that protect our Charter rights.