Experimental vaccines and the law
The COVID-19 vaccines are currently an unlicensed, experimental treatment. What if you don't consent to participation in scientific research?
IN OUR LAST NEWSLETTER,1 we looked at the experimental COVID-19 vaccines and how the UK Government bypassed the safety controls contained in the Human Medicines Regulations 2012, both to authorise their use without a license, and to prohibit us from suing their manufacturers if we are harmed by any currently unknown side-effect.
The consequence of this is that, if you consent to vaccination, you are participating in scientific research into an experimental treatment. That’s fine if you do so willingly, feel adequately informed about the consequences, and believe that the risks of infection outweigh the risks of experimental vaccination treatment. In this newsletter, we look at the laws protecting those of us who don’t.2
Four fundamental legal principles protect us:
We cannot be forced to undergo vaccination
We cannot be required by law to undergo medical treatment, including vaccination. Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984:3
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.
It’s as simple as that.
We must be able freely to give informed consent, and can do so
“Informed consent” forms the foundation of medical laws, ethics, and codes in liberal democracies. It’s written into the United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights:4
no one shall be subjected without his free consent to medical or scientific experimentation.
It’s written into The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe’s “Covid-19 vaccines: ethical, legal and practical considerations”:5
with respect to ensuring high vaccine uptake: ensure that citizens are informed that the vaccination is NOT mandatory and that no one is politically, socially, or otherwise pressured to get themselves vaccinated, if they do not wish to do so themselves
It’s written into The Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights:6
Any preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic medical intervention is only to be carried out with the prior, free and informed consent of the person concerned, based on adequate information
Here in the UK, the Supreme Court, Montgomery v Lanarkshire Health Board (2015) concluded that:7
English law must recognise a duty of the doctor to warn his patient of risk inherent in the treatment which he is proposing
In the same ruling, the Supreme Court concluded that (Para 50):
a conscious adult patient of sound mind is entitled to decide for herself whether or not she will submit to a particular course of treatment proposed by the doctor
patients are now widely regarded as persons holding rights, rather than as the passive recipients of the care of the medical profession.
it has become far easier, and far more common, for members of the public to obtain information about symptoms, investigations, treatment options, risks and side-effects…It would therefore be a mistake to view patients as uninformed, incapable of understanding medical matters, or wholly dependent upon a flow of information from doctors.
In short: you have rights, you are able to understand risk, and the vaccine administrator has a Duty in law to warn you of the risks you are undertaking by receiving an experimental vaccine treatment. But since the long term safety trials necessary to determine the risks inherent in the experimental vaccine treatments will not be concluded for another two years, she can’t fulfil this duty. Even if she could, you can decline.
We cannot be forced, coerced, or deceived into giving consent
The Nuremberg Code (1947) was devised in response to the horrors of German racial sterilisation and medical experimentation. It goes beyond a requirement for voluntary consent, and insists that we cannot be coerced into giving it. Article 1 (my emphasis):8
The voluntary consent of the human subject is absolutely essential. This means that the person involved should have legal capacity to give consent; should be so situated as to be able to exercise free power of choice, without the intervention of any element of force, fraud, deceit, duress, overreaching, or other ulterior form of constraint or coercion;
Denying us access to our society unless we submit to an unlicensed, experimental medical treatment is an ulterior form of coercion. Forcing us to surrender our privacy under a biometric surveillance program unless we submit to an unlicensed, experimental medical treatment is an ulterior form of coercion. Imposing covert psychological strategies designed to operate below the level of people’s awareness9 to ‘nudge’ citizens to submit to an unlicensed, experimental medical treatment is a fraudulent, deceitful, ulterior form of coercion.
The UK Government cannot do it, and we do not have to submit to it.
We cannot be discriminated against
And if you do choose not to participate in scientific research into an experimental treatment, the Equality Act (2010)10 ensures that you cannot be discriminated against for doing so. The Act defines a series of ‘protected characteristics’, of which ‘disability’ is one. Those who suffer from infection, for example HIV, automatically meet the disability definition.11 Under the Act, treating an infected person unfavourably—say, denying you access to a bar or restaurant—is prohibited. Moreover, the Act places a Duty on anyone putting an infected person at a disadvantage to take such steps as are reasonable to have to take to avoid the disadvantage.
Ultimately, the test of these rights will be in court. I suspect many cases will be brought over the coming months—so many, perhaps, that the justice system will be overrun.
But it all starts with knowing where we stand. And where we stand is: we cannot be forced to undergo vaccination, experimental or licensed; we cannot be coerced into giving consent to undergo vaccination; and we cannot be discriminated against if we choose not to be vaccinated.
It’s the law.
One more thing…
If you believe the time has come when we must take action and hold all UK authorities, including the Government, to account—with or without their agreement—for the catastrophe they have inflicted on our society, check out UK Citizen 2021 and take action today.
This essay is based on an excellent series of tweets published by Joel Smalley who, if you are interested in these matters, I highly recommend you follow. NOTE: I am not a legal expert, and this is not legal advice. You must obtain your own legal advice if you decide to act on anything contained in this essay.
Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, ‘Covid-19 vaccines: ethical, legal and practical considerations’ (2021), 7.3 (link)
Gordon Rayner, “State of fear: how ministers ‘used covert tactics’ to keep scared public at home”, The Telegraph, 2 April 2021 (link)