Administration officials at Western University have formally revoked the school's COVID-19 boosted mandate it arbitrarily placed on all staff, students and visitors to campus in late August 2022.
In an update issued to its community, Western’s vice-president of operations and finance says, “Based on the latest consultation with our medical experts and local public health, we are revoking our vaccination policy and will no longer require students, employees, and visitors to be vaccinated to come to campus.”
In the next breath, Western promotes vaccination as the “best defence” against severe COVID-19 illness and hospitalization. “Masks will still be required in instructional spaces in the winter term after the December break,” the statement continues.
Western has been ground zero in the battle for medical freedom and bodily autonomy in Canadian academia. Dr. Julie Ponesse was terminated from her position as an ethics professor after 20 years following her decision to resist the school's COVID-19 vaccine mandate when it was first introduced in the fall of 2021.
Ponesse explained her opposition to Western's vaccine mandate in a tearful video posted to her YouTube page, which went viral across the globe.
After her dismissal, Ponesse became the Ethics Scholar at Canada's largest civil liberties charity, The Democracy Fund (TDF). The organization filed appeal documents challenging the legitimacy of the vaccination policy on November 21, says TDF lawyer Mark Joseph. The court originally dismissed the application made by TDF against Western University on September 24.
Since joining TDF, Ponesse has published a best-selling book, My Choice: The Ethical Case Against COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates.