People who choose not to vaccinate or those who don’t want to take an experimental vaccine have been understandably anxious about the possibility that a covid 19 vaccine may be mandated, particularly in light of media articles suggesting that lockdown can’t end until a vaccine is produced. A former lawyer has this to say about the law and the right to refuse:
I joined the legal webinar last night which was hosted by Sir Bob Neill MP. The panel members were a mixture of barristers, QC’s (very senior barristers and/or Judges), Lord Sandhurst QC, a Historian and a constitutional academic.
The new 2020 Laws are based on powers in the 1984 Public Health (Control of Diseases) Act. Essentially, there are powers for people to be required to be screened and assessed (these are called requirements or restrictions) and further powers to allow people to be removed, detained, assessed, disinfected etc (these are called SPECIAL requirements or restrictions) but please be assured these powers are extreme and highly unlikely to be used. The panel were unanimous last night that the powers have NOT been used in the UK, and were highly unlikely to be. Many hurdles would have to be jumped to allow such powers, including seeking a Magistrate to make an order. All these powers are hindered by the fact they MUST be proportionate and the panel could NOT find any reason to start imposing them.
As for mandatory vaccines (or other treatment) the new 2020 Law is prohibited (because the 1984 Act says so) from requiring a person to undergo treatment, including vaccines. In fact the panel were again unanimous that they could never envisage a mandatory vaccination requirement in the UK.