The Democracy Fund Files Lawsuit Against Western University’s Booster Mandate

Written By Wyatt Claypool, Posted on September 2, 2022

Today, The Democracy Fund (TDF) put out a press release, stating that they have filed a notice of application against Western University on behalf of all students who refuse to comply with the booster mandate. TDF is doing this in conjunction with lawyers Lisa Bildy of Libertas Law, assisted by Bruce Pardy of Rights Probe.

Western University so far is the only university in Canada to take the radical step to require all students not only to get vaccinated by also boosted in order to attend classes this year, and has rightfully faced massive blowback for doing it.

It was just a few days ago that a mass student protest occurred on campus against Western’s discriminatory rules. 

(Photo from The CBC)

The legal strategy that TDF and their partnered lawyers are taking seems calculated to force Western to back off of their mandates as quickly as possible.

According to TDF, their specific contention against Western is that the “collection of students’ private health information is a breach of privacy laws,” rather than going after marginal safety arguments other groups and individuals have made against vaccine mandates.

The press release TDF put out goes on to explain that:

After the provincial government rescinded its directive, it discontinued the use of its Verify Ontario App on June 24, 2022. Western has repurposed its own digital portal to collect, store, copy and use students’ proof of vaccination.

On its website, Western claims to be committed to the requirements of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA). However, FIPPA states: “No person shall collect personal information on behalf of an institution unless the collection is expressly authorized by statute, used for the purposes of law enforcement or necessary to the proper administration of a lawfully authorized activity.” Western University is one of the “institutions” to which the prohibition applies.

The student’s legal challenge will argue that, given the resumption of normality across the province, the lack of a vaccine directive from the provincial government, the lack of any other legal enactment or authorization to collect vaccination status, and the fact that other Ontario universities are proceeding without requiring disclosure of such information, Western’s collection of private health information such as COVID-19 vaccination status is “unnecessary to the proper administration of a lawfully authorized activity” under FIPPA. The application will seek a declaration from the Court that Western’s collection of private health information is unlawful and an injunction prohibiting it from doing so. 

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice in London has scheduled that it will be speaking to this case on September 9, 2022. A full hearing on the notice of application will not occur until a time after that date.

Hopefully, the simple action of TDF filing against  Western University may be enough to pressure the university to back down and stop its discriminatory, and oddly political, vaccine policy on campus.

Wyatt Claypool

Wyatt is a student at Mount Royal University, where he is the president of its Campus Conservative club. In his writing, he focuses on covering provincial and federal politics, firearms regulation, and the energy sector. Wyatt has also previously written for The Post Millennial.

One response to “The Democracy Fund Files Lawsuit Against Western University’s Booster Mandate”

  1. tweeter says:

    yay! nice work TDF