Keep up to date with latest legal developments
A number of friends here have written to me to express fear over the recent publication of articles and youtube videos promoting the contention that the Government has introduced changes to legislation in which it may force individuals to undergo treatment (The Public Health (control of diseases) Act 1984) and/or experimental or finally approved vaccinations for Covid19.
Some wrote to me expressing worry over the idea that the country is sinking into the kind of police state that our relatives fought tyranny to prevent. The evolution of our society from that which defines our nation as being one that protects freedom into a state in which ministers at a whim may exercise powers to restrict freedom, change or remove legal duties that have long been established strikes fear into the hearts of so many.. Relaxing legal responsibility owed by councils to the vulnerable is deeply disturbing and to my mind completely unnecessary. It appears that the Government do not trust our courts to apply existing laws to protect against vexatious claims whilst we are all in the midst of a pandemic. Judicial review is afterall a discretionary remedy unlikely to be invoked during a time when the focus must rightly be on the protection of lives rather than to impose the impossible. However the court should be available to all who are abandoned.
Sure there are many who claim that the Coronavirus law is a disproportionate response eradicating critical Human Rights such as the right to see family, or to go outside without fear of incarceration. These are not insignificant rights. Millions afterall died to preserve these rights. But the counter argument is to my mind much stronger. Temporary restrictions upon our lives to actually protect life preserves one of the most fundamental human rights. The right to life. This indiscriminate invisible killer is like nothing we have ever previously experienced That is why most stay at home but it is not because they fear what the law will do but rather what the virus will do. Yet ironically that is why some, and I find myself among them , believe heavy handed legislation is totally unnecessary and understandably anxiety provoking for multiple good reasons.
My initial reaction to some of my friends here who expressed alarm over forced vaccines was to seek to promote a bit of calm. “Having a power is one thing”, I told one, “abusing it, is another”. When those in authority seek to overstep the mark by abusing their power that is when public lawyers like I, rise to the challenge to try to put a stop to it.
Stories have emerged claiming that the state is going further to impose even more restrictions and requirements. I was sent a YouTube video in which a lawyer argued that draconian changes had been introduced implying the power to force treatment was now available and will be used.
I have not researched the issue about vaccines but I thought I should shed some light on some provisions I quickly found within the 1984 Act which I have, at first glance noted..
Section 45 lists all the powers to issue quite chilling restrictions to civil liberties (some very frightening I admit) but
Section 45E deals with Medical treatment and states..
Regulations under section 45B or 45C may not include provision requiring a person to undergo medical treatment.
“ Medical treatment ” includes vaccination and other prophylactic treatment
There is a lot about the Act and the 2020 Act that I find very deeply concerning (especially in regard to the area of law that I spend most of my professional life working within) but at first glance I could not see any power to force a person to undergo a vaccination and neither does my quick reading of the legislation (unless I missed something) appear to permit a claim that forced vaccinations or treatment is around the corner. Even if my friends can point me to the provision that supports a power to impose treatment I do not think that such a power can be indiscriminately imposed like a blanket without exception. Some rightly fear a negative immune response or some other complications caused by a product that may not have been sufficiently tested. That is why such a power if exercised in that way would to my mind simply cause to wake a sleeping lion in the form of many human rights lawyers who will be queuing up for their time in court although if I joined that queue I think I would find that the majority would be praying for a vaccine first.