Harvard Renews COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate, Joining 69 Other Schools


Authored by Matthew Lysiak via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

Students at Harvard University will continue to be required to take the COVID-19 vaccine in order to register for the upcoming semester, the school has recently announced, joining 69 other schools around the country that still require the shot.

“Harvard requires all students who will be on campus to have some protection from COVID-19 through vaccination,” reads a statement posted by the school. “This may be through the initial primary series of COVID-19 vaccination or one of the most recent COVID-19 boosters.”

Students who fail to show approved documentation will be unable to sign up for classes, with the website warning that should they “fall out of compliance at any time for any of the required immunizations, registration holds will be automatically applied.”

Dr. Mary Talley Bowden, a practitioner in Texas and founder of Coalition of Health Freedom, told The Epoch Times that the COVID-19 vaccine is ineffective, but mandating medical procedures violates the student’s constitutionally protected rights.

“I am deeply concerned that a university once considered the best in the nation has adopted a policy that completely disregards the data showing the COVID shots do not prevent transmission,” said Dr. Bowden.

Further, mandating the COVID shots violates human rights and discriminates against its students by setting rules that only apply to them, but not the entire campus.

While students are required to get the COVID-19 vaccine, it is recommended but not mandated for the school’s faculty members or staff, according to Harvard University Health Services (HUHS).

“HUHS no longer requires employees to submit COVID-19 vaccine documentation,” the website states. “As we work to continue the high levels of vaccination needed to protect our community, Harvard highly recommends being up-to-date per the CDC definition for all Harvard community members, including faculty, students, staff, and researchers, who will have any on-campus presence.”

Government officials began pressuring schools to push students to get the vaccine almost immediately after it hit the market.

In 2021, Jerome Adams, the Surgeon General at the time, urged schools to mandate the COVID-19 shot in an “Open Letter to Leaders in Higher Education.” Mr. James said he was “asking leaders to take strong steps to get as close as possible to 100 percent of their students, faculty and staff vaccinated early in the academic year.”

The letter continued that for “all colleges and universities, we also encourage steps to make vaccination easy. Set up pop-up vaccine clinics to meet students as they return to campus, including move-in, orientation, football games and tailgates, and at student life events. Offer paid leave for staff and faculty to get vaccinated and in the event of side effects. Engage with your student leaders to get word out about vaccination to other students. … Peer-to-peer engagement is one of the best ways to achieve behavior change in young adults.”

Controversy

However, the past two years have seen the COVID-19 vaccines become mired in controversy. The original COVID-19 vaccines were taken by more than 80 percent of Americans after officials pledged that the shots would effectively prevent contraction and stop the spread of the disease.

However, once it was revealed that the shots didn’t work as promised, interest in the subsequent booster decreased dramatically.

Vaccines could also be attributed to widespread reports of adverse health outcomes believed to have been caused by the shots. COVID-19 vaccines have been named the primary suspect in over 1.5 million adverse event reports, according to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) database. The numbers could be even higher. An FDA-funded study out of Harvard found that VAERS cases represent fewer than 1 percent of vaccine adverse events.

Despite the controversy, COVID-19 vaccine mandates continue to be in effect for students at 70 (including Harvard) out of the top 800 colleges in the United States, according to recent data acquired by No College Mandates. This organization describes itself as a “group of concerned parents, doctors, nurses, professors, students and other college stakeholders working towards the common goal of ending COVID-19 vaccine mandates.”

Lucia Sinatra, co-founder of No College Mandates, told The Epoch Times that the evidence shows that institutions of higher learning have turned their back on the scientific method.

“I can’t see how they can continue to justify a student-only mandate policy in the name of keeping the community safe,” said Ms. Sinatra. “There are such blinders on preventing any sort of open debate on what the actual data is showing that it is literally mind-blowing.

It’s idiotic, and history will not reflect kindly on these elite institutions,” added Ms. Sinatra.

Dr. Bowden says momentum is growing, with over 17,000 physicians and scientists calling for COVID-19 shots to be pulled off the market.

However, to end the mandates would take a change in political leadership, according to Dr. Bowden, who helped form a political action committee—Americans for Health Freedom—dedicated to funding campaigns that support that cause.

“The pandemic was a stress test to our constitution, and we need our elected officials to step in and protect the people who elected them,” said Dr. Bowden. “Americans for Health Freedom is working to educate the public and support politicians who will fight for medical freedom.”

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