By Guy Page
Will Vermont employers – including the five colleges requiring vaccination for all returning students in the fall – be held legally liable for adverse reactions to “experimental usage” vaccines? Gov. Scott said yesterday he doesn’t know.
Vermont Daily asked: “I’ve seen legal opinions that institutions like businesses, colleges, schools requiring vaccination for work or enrollment of a vaccine that is still technically ‘emergency usage’ will be liable for legal damages if someone gets sick or dies as a result of the vaccine. Is this true?”
“I don’t know. I haven’t seen the legal analysis,” Gov. Scott replied at about the one hour, 15 minute mark of the June 1 press conference. “I saw today that Moderna was going for something other than emergency usage. I would expect all of them to do that. I don’t have any knowledge of the legal analysis at this point.”
Vermont Daily persisted: “Does that concern you as far as our Vermont institutions, the five colleges for example? Could there be some blowback there?”
“I think that’s a legal question probably better for a lawyer. I think a business should be able to do what they want to do. Then you have the option of either going to that institution, going into that business. If you don’t want to adhere to their rules, you don’t have to, there are other choices out there,” Scott said.
Some business experts say federal law may allow employers to require vaccination that is medically necessary for the operation of the business, and provided religious and disability exemptions are included. They point to an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) opinion that generally permits employer-required vaccination. However, other legal experts cite Constitutional law about personal privacy and the Nuremberg protocols banning experimental treatment without consent. Still others warn that patients fired for refusing vaccination may pursue wrongful termination lawsuits.