IEU letter to CESA seeking evidence based justification for continuing mandate
The IEU is seeking evidence-based justification for continuing the vaccine mandate in Catholic schools.
Members are advised to await the answers from CESA to our attached letter before responding to employer feedback request and to ask the same questions of local management.
See letter below
5 April 2022
Dr Neil McGoran
Director Catholic Education SA
CC Susan Young
Re: Proposed policy to maintain vaccination mandate
The IEU is committed to ensuring that schools are as safe as practical for staff and the rest of the school communities. At the same time the IEU does not support excessive regulation which is onerous, oppressive, unfair or ineffective.
The IEU recognises the social contract we all undertake, where certain freedoms are relinquished for some greater personal or community good. The IEU therefore would need satisfactory justification to be provided to be able to be supportive of any continued vaccination mandates in excess of that applicable more widely. We draw no confidence from the 11 page Risk Assessment Report performed by CSHWSA and dated 29 March 2022. To simply classify all activities as having a “High” inherent risk rating is meaningless without detailing the criteria or objective foundation of such an assessment.
In coming to our position on the proposals the IEU needs some sound answers to the following two fundamental questions. The answers will be instrumental in formulating our advice to members and our advocacy on their behalf. Time is of the essence as members are expressing serious concerns to us now.
Given that the message from SA Health that mandated vaccines for school staff have, in effect, outlived their usefulness, what evidenced-based rationale is CESA using to justify the proposed maintenance of a mandate which has been rescinded for SA schools?
Given that perhaps only 50% of students are fully vaccinated, what practical difference will it make to community contagion if a small number of staff are unvaccinated?
The IEU has been content to follow the advice of the health experts. Neither the Union nor the employers fall into that category. We cannot support any restrictions on employment in excess of that prescribed by the recognised health experts without a sound evidence-based rationale. Opinion and preference will just not cut it and “optics” is not a sufficient justification.