The Federal Court rules it mandatory for Indiana University students to get vaccinated against the Covid virus. Several higher educational institutes including schools and colleges, throughout New York and California, have followed suit.
In a 101 page opinion, the US District Court Judge, Damon R. Leichty, has stated that the Universities hold the right to vaccinate their staff members, faculty, and students, according to the Fourteenth Amendment.
Federal Judge Mandates Vaccination For Indiana University Students- Stirs Controversy
The Judge further emphasized the deactivation of the access cards of the students to the University and also that the non-vaccinated students would be denied entry into the University premises. Even access to their email accounts would be barred from usage. Earlier, a request by the school authorities in Northern Indiana to stop vaccination drives to staff, students, and faculty members, just two weeks before the fall semester, was denied by the judge.
The University authorities have welcomed this decision. With a student strength of almost 90,000, this University is one of the most publicly prominent places to have adopted a vaccine mandate. As the University policy states that staff members and students must be fully vaccinated (both the shots) and if they do not they can switch on to online programs.
Just as several schools and Universities are preparing for a reopen in the fall, such a decision could actually help the authorities to protect campus people in the wake of the lethal viral infection and help them return with a safer fall semester. They are preparing to resume in August on the main Bloomington Campus.
However, the students were unhappy with the lawsuit. The students representative, the attorney, James Bopp Jr., said, that they would appeal to the Supreme Court for the manhandling of their personal rights as the Fourteenth Amendment states that they have the right to reject medical treatment. He said that an admitted student’s right cannot be conditioned.
The Bopp Law Firm in Terre Haute, Ind., opposed the mandate by saying that there was relatively a low risk of contracting serious symptoms with regard to the age groups and also that the long term effects of the lifesaving vaccines are unknown.
Eight students had earlier filed preliminary injunctions against such a mandate as they feel the decision to be interfering with their privacy. They even argued against the necessity of wearing masks and getting tested for Corona, which the judge readily denied, stating that there is no Constitutional Right that supports the fact. The students argued that such a mandate opposes modern medical ethics. A few even raised issues of religion for not complying with the orders of wearing masks.
What the law and courts of justice have to state is that the students cannot be forced to act on what the University decides. If they wish to continue with their education and come back to the University grounds, they need to exempt themselves and get the vaccine. Or else they are free to choose any other option as this policy is only for this semester. It is an offer that any student or staff can reject at his own risk.
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