Friday, July 23, 2021

A Template for Mandatory Vaccinations

Florida has been among the most open states when it comes to America's repose to the COVID-19 pandemic, and yet, as you will see in this posting, is prepared to take what can only be described as draconian measures to its emergency measures laws.


Bill CS/CS/SB/2006 "Emergency Management" is typical of government bills; extremely wordy and mind-numbingly boring to read.  Yet, as is the case with most legislation, the "devil is in the details".  Let's look at Section 17:


Paragraph (c) of subsection (1) and subsection (2) of section 381.00315, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:


"381.00315 Public health advisories; public health emergencies; isolation and quarantines.—The State Health Officer is responsible for declaring public health emergencies, issuing public health advisories, and ordering isolation or quarantines."


A public health emergency is defined as follows:


"“Public health emergency” means any occurrence, or threat thereof, whether natural or manmade, which results or may  result in substantial injury or harm to the public health from infectious disease, chemical agents, nuclear agents, biological toxins, or situations involving mass casualties or natural disasters."


Now, let's focus on lines 1097 to 1111 which are found under Section 17 with bolds being mine:


"Ordering an individual to be examined, tested, vaccinated, treated, isolated, or quarantined for communicable diseases that have significant morbidity or mortality and present a severe danger to public health. Individuals who are unable or unwilling to be examined, tested, vaccinated, or treated for reasons of health, religion, or conscience may be subjected to isolation or quarantine.


a. Examination, testing, vaccination, or treatment may be performed by any qualified person authorized by the State Health Officer.


b. If the individual poses a danger to the public health, the State Health Officer may subject the individual to isolation or quarantine. If there is no practical method to isolate or quarantine the individual, the State Health Officer may use any means necessary to vaccinate or treat the individual.


c. Any order of the State Health Officer given to effectuate this paragraph is immediately  enforceable by a law enforcement officer under s. 381.0012.

Basically, it is up to the discretion of the State Health Officer to determine whether the threshold has been reached that would require a public health emergency to be declared and as we have discovered during the COVID-19 pandemic, health officers and governments seem willing to stretch these emergencies for many, many months.  

In case it should change or disappear from the internet, here is a screen capture showing the pertinent section:


Here is the bill history noting that it when it was voted on in the Senate, it was approved with 23 yeas and 15 nays, when it was voted on in the House, it was approved with 78 yeas and 36 nays and that the bill was approved by the state governor on May 3, 2021:


And there we have it,  the template for mandatory vaccinations.  The Florida state legislature has just given the itself the right to isolate or quarantine individuals who present a "severe danger" to public health for an undefined period of time.  Even if your religion or health contradicts vaccination, the State Health Officer has the right to isolate, quarantine and vaccinate you.  If isolation and quarantining are not possible, the State Health Officer can use "any means necessary" to vaccinate or treat the individual.  And, just in case you think that you can just refuse, law enforcement officers are given the right to enforce this section of the bill.


Welcome to our collective futures.  If governments can lock us down for health reasons, there are many other reasons that they can lock us down, force us into quarantine and isolate us from our families and each other.