Judge rules that Indiana University can require Covid vaccines

Judge rules that Indiana University can require Covid vaccines

July 21, 2021: -On Sunday, a federal judge ruled that Indiana University can require its students to get vaccinated against coronavirus in the ruling of first time upholding a vaccine mandate by an educational institution.

Judge Damon R. Leichty of the U.S. District Court for Northern Indiana did not accept a request for a preliminary injunction that would have stopped the school from requiring most students, faculty, and staff to get vaccinated temporarily for at least two weeks before the fall semester.

Students who don’t get vaccinated and do not receive an exemption cannot go on campus or use university email accounts. Their cards of access to campus will be deactivated, written by the judge.

Eight students sued the school after the policy was announced in May, arguing the mandate infringes on their bodily autonomy and medical privacy. They even argued against mask requirements and Covid testing, but the judge did not accept even those requests, saying “there is no fundamental constitutional right not to wear a mask.”

“They ask the court to enter a preliminary injunction, an extraordinary remedy that requires a strong showing that they will succeed on the merits of their claims, that they can sustain irreparable harm, and that the balance of harms and the public interest favor like a remedy,” the judge further wrote. “The court now denies their motion.”

The lawsuit could have broader implications for different schools. Hundreds of higher education institutions, which include the state and city university systems in New York and California, have made the vaccines mandatory for students in the fall.

“Recognizing the students’ huge liberty to refuse unwanted medical treatment, the Fourteenth Amendment permits Indiana University to pursue a reasonable and due the vaccination process in the legitimate interest of public health for its students, faculty, and staff,” the judge wrote.

The New York Times reported that James Bopp Jr., who represented the students, said they would appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. He said, According to the Times, America’s Frontline Doctors, a conservative group that’s protested several Covid-19 public health measures, including the vaccine that will cover the cost.

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