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Western University students appeal court decision to ignore privacy rights over Covid vaccine database

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A court recently ruled that Western University’s collection of data on students’ vaccination status is not a breach of their privacy rights.

The ruling about the Ontario public research university states that the court did “not accept that the Policy will ‘force’ members of the university community to disclose their personal information.”

RelatedHow vaccine passports are crushing freedom, privacy, and civil liberties

The judge added that they were “not persuaded that a disposal order is warranted in the circumstances.”

“The relief sought is broad. The applicants did not provide any authority in support of this relief. The applicants confirmed on the hearing of the application that they want all proof of vaccine information collected by Western to be destroyed. The court does not comprehend any reasonable basis for such a broad order. Among other issues, proof of vaccine information in the 2021-2022 year was collected pursuant to the province’s mandate,” the judge wrote in the ruling.

The students, being represented by The Democracy Fund (TDF), plan to appeal the ruling.

In a statement to Rebel, TDF said: “The students’ legal team had argued that an institution’s ‘lawfully authorized activities’ are the services or programs for which the institution exists to provide to the community – in this case, the provision of post-secondary education and other incidental activities.”

According to TDF, the collection of students’ private medical information is not required for Western University to perform its “lawfully authorized activities.”

In a statement justifying the mandates, Western University’s vice president Florentine Strzelczyk said: “While we can’t predict when the next wave of COVID-19 might come, we believe these measures will help us protect the in-person experience that Western is known for. We want to do everything we can to offer our students a great on-campus experience throughout the academic year.”

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