I am writing to you regarding my daughter, [name], who is due to shortly commence her studies with you as a [course name] student, a prospect about which she is very excited. Thank you for all the information, encouragement, and support you have offered to [name] and our family so far.
[Name] has fulfilled all the admissions criteria that were presented to her as a prerequisite for entry and has already been offered a place on the course and accommodation (for which we have paid a holding deposit), so her father and I, as the people who will be financially facilitating her studies, were deeply shocked and dismayed to receive a correspondence from the college, forwarded to us by [our daughter], regarding "mandatory student vaccinations" for COVID-19.
Our family has carefully considered the benefits and risks of these vaccinations, which we have discussed at length with [our daughter] and trusted healthcare professionals, and we have made the decision not to receive them. While I am happy to elucidate upon our reasons for this decision in a subsequent correspondence, the short window of time between the issuing of your correspondence on [date], and the commencement of enrolment and induction [less than two weeks later], means in the interests of expediency and resolving this situation as a matter of urgency, I must move immediately to [name]'s legal rights as regards medical treatment.
The application of all medical procedures in this country, including vaccinations, are governed by strict principles of informed consent, as per the Montgomery ruling (1). This ruling is legally binding and states that, if a patient's consent to receiving a medical process is not adequately informed, then their consent is not legally valid.
The Montgomery ruling makes it incumbent on all medical practitioners bound by the General Medical Council to ensure all patients have been properly informed of all material risks of procedures before they consent to receive them.
The key passages from the Montgomery judgment involve what a patient would consider to be material risk:
'The doctor is therefore under a duty to take reasonable care to ensure that the patient is aware of any material risks involved in any recommended treatment, and of any reasonable alternative or variant treatments.
'The test of materiality is whether, in the circumstances of the particular case, a reasonable person in the patient's position would be likely to attach significance to the risk, or the doctor is or should reasonably be aware that the particular patient would be likely to attach significance to it.'
In the correspondence you have sent to [my daughter] regarding "mandatory" COVID-19 vaccinations, there is no reference to the material risks of vaccination. Therefore, this requirement is in breach of the Montgomery ruling.
If the Montgomery ruling has not been fulfilled, then an individual is by legal definition medically exempt, because valid medical consent entirely depends on the stipulations set out by the Montgomery ruling being met. Therefore, [my daughter] - and any other student who is offered vaccination in the absence of sufficiently informed consent - is medically exempt.
A corollary of this is whether the college has completed a comprehensive risk assessment as pertains to any medical procedures, including vaccinations and medical testing, that it intends to conduct on students on college premises. All medical processes carry a degree of risk, and so this risk must be thoroughly evaluated in the appropriate way. A risk assessment that only evaluates the risk of COVID-19 transmission is not an adequate risk assessment, as there are multiple other risks, some of them severe, of swab testing and vaccination, both of which represent invasive medical interventions. Please confirm whether a comprehensive risk assessment of this type exists.
Leading on from this is that suggesting to students that their being resident at college, and fully participating in college life, is dependent on vaccination status is clearly coercive, and multiple domestic and international treaties on human rights make it very clear that medical consent is not legally valid if any element of coercion is involved.
This is enshrined in law by UNESCO'S Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights, which states at Article 6, section 1:
"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. The consent should, where appropriate, be express and may be withdrawn by the person concerned at any time and for any reason without disadvantage or prejudice." (2)
Clearly, preventing [name] from living onsite and from fully engaging in college life should she choose to decline vaccinations represents a major social and academic disadvantage and is an acute form of prejudice.
Please note that UNESCO’s declaration is equally applicable to COVID-19 testing, which also cannot be legally enforced, because enforcing a medical diagnostic (making it "mandatory") is coercive, and coercion invalidates consent. If a student is to be COVID-19 tested, then their consent to this testing must be offered entirely freely, and without any penalty resulting if they decline. This is the legal position in the UK and in all countries that prioritise the essential and inalienable nature of human rights, especially in regards to medical ethics.
It is also important to note that the COVID-19 vaccines are currently still in clinical trials, which will not be complete until 2023 (3). This renders them 'experimental medicine', and there are specific laws to protect people where medical experiments are concerned, including the Nuremberg Code, which was developed specifically to safeguard the rights of the individual where it comes to human medical experimentation. The Nuremberg Code states:
"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." (4)
Again, predicating [name]'s residence at college, and full participation in college life, on her vaccination status, represents both coercion and duress, and is therefore in breach of the Nuremberg Code.
To sum, [name]'s rights to decline any medical procedure offered to her and not to be discriminated against or disadvantaged in any way as a result, are protected by multiple domestic and international medical ethics and human rights laws. As such, I seek your swift and urgent reassurance that pressure to receive either COVID-19 vaccinations or COVID-19 tests as a condition of full participation in college life, will no longer be exerted upon [name], and her right to freely choose what is injected or inserted into her body, in the absence of any element of coercion or duress, will be fully respected.
Please note I am taking ongoing legal advice on this situation.