Queensland Supreme Court rules COVID-19 vaccine mandates for cops and paramedics were unlawful

Queensland Supreme Court rules COVID-19 vaccine mandates for cops and paramedics were unlawful

Four years after the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) began – when public health mandates such as lockdowns, social distancing and vaccines were rolled out – Australia has finally realized that its pandemic response was not in accordance with the law based on human rights grounds.

On Tuesday, Feb. 27, the Queensland Supreme Court ruled that COVID-19 vaccine mandates for frontliners, including for police officers and paramedics, were unlawful. Senior Judge Administrator Glenn Martin delivered a 115-page judgment stating that the directives issued by Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll failed to give proper consideration to human rights. According to the decision, the directions limited the human rights of the said workers because they were required to undergo a medical procedure without full consent.

Former Queensland Health Director-General John Wakefield was unable to prove he issued the vaccine mandate under an implied term of the employment agreements for ambulance service workers. As a result, both vaccine mandates were found by the court to be “unlawful” and to have no effect. This means 74 named applicants to the court, who are current employees of the ambulance and police services, cannot be fired or otherwise disciplined as a result of not following the vaccine mandate.

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“This decision by the Queensland Supreme Court makes it paramount we have a Royal Commission into the Covid-19 pandemic,” Senator Pauline Hanson said about the landmark ruling from three lawsuits brought against the Queensland Police Service and Queensland Ambulance Service for their directions to workers issued in 2021 and 2022.

“Today has seen an important victory in the fight for freedom and human rights in Australia. The Queensland Supreme Court today determined that COVID-19 vaccine mandates imposed on police and health workers were unlawful,” Hanson said in the Australian Parliament yesterday. She also called for a Royal Commission.

Meanwhile, businessman and former politician Clive Palmer, who claimed to have provided at least $2.5 million to support the case, also lauded the decision. “We can celebrate because this is the first precedent in the Western world where a trial has gone the full distance and the court has found a trampling of human rights,” Palmer said.

According to reports, the decision could still be appealed in the Supreme Court of Appeals. Both Queensland Health and the Queensland police said on Tuesday they were considering their legal options.

Landmark decision paves way for demands for reinstatement and compensation

Though not delving much into the efficacy of the vaccines, the decision was a victory because it highlighted the violation of basic human rights for coercing vaccination of employees without full consent.

This now serves, though long overdue, as an eye-opener to policymakers to navigate more carefully the delicate balance between public health imperatives and personal freedoms. “It also serves as a reminder to senior officials within the police and ambulance services to rebuild relationships and trust eroded in the wake of these mandates,” the BNN‘s correspondents wrote in a commentary.

Analysts think that this is the start where more claims would “definitely” be made in Queensland courts and other jurisdictions over the coming months. “This is the first of a wave of claims of this type that we’re going to see come before the courts,” Wendy Bonython, a Bond University associate law professor said. “It’s an interesting decision because it’s the first one of its type.” However, Bonython said the largest part of the decision focused on the applicability of the Queensland Human Rights Act, and only the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) and Victoria have “comparable” legislation. “So, if we’re looking at other jurisdictions and states, any arguments along similar lines, they’re going have to be raised under different legal grounds,” she said.

Also, the ruling does not order terminated employees to be reinstated, or any other penalties encountered due to the mandate, but she said it “does open the door for them to seek reinstatement,”  adding that workers involved in the ruling may have to go through further legal channels to be reinstated. “The outcome of the decision is actually quite limited,” she admitted.

Criminal lawyer and former Queensland Law Society president Bill Potts said the decision is “a very live can of worms” as to whether the workers involved can request compensation. He further stated that it would be a matter for the courts whether the workers would be able to successfully receive compensation for “loss of employment” or “lost and suffered damages.” Bonython added that in this case, the applicants weren’t seeking back pay or reinstatement. “All they’ve sought, and all they’ve got, is a correction from the court saying that these directions are unlawful,” she said. (Related: Employers that mandated COVID-19 injections for workers can be held LIABLE for vaccine injuries, Australian court rules.)

Visit VaccineWars.com for more news related to COVID-19 vaccine mandates‘ efficacy, safety and legality.

Sources for this article include:

Expose-News.com

Archive.SCLQLD.org.au

BNNBreaking.com

ABC.net.au

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