NEW ORLEANS, LA – Liberty Counsel recently sent a letter to the dean of the Louisiana State University School of Dentistry, and now that school will no longer mandate that faculty, staff and students take the COVID-19 “vaccine.”
A request regarding Chancellor Larry Hollier’s vaccine mandate for attendance at graduation (“Anyone who is not vaccinated will not be allowed to participate in person, only virtually.”) remains outstanding.
On March 16, Dentistry Dean Robert Laughlin notified faculty, staff and students at the dental school “involved in direct patient care will be required to show proof of having received full vaccination for COVID-19,” effective March 22, 2021. Noncompliance would result in the student’s inability to complete course requirements and graduate. Concerned students contacted Liberty Counsel.
Liberty Counsel’s letter dated March 19 to Dean Robert Laughlin stated the mandate was a “violation of fundamental individual, economic and religious liberties. These include the rights of personal autonomy and bodily integrity, and the right to accept or reject the various COVID vaccines based on religious belief.”
The letter pointed out that “all existing COVID vaccines are under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), and LSU may not condition participation in education programs or continued employment on taking an EUA-authorized COVID vaccine. Some people hold sincere religious beliefs against taking vaccines in general, or taking those derived from aborted fetal cell lines, or sold by companies that profit from the sale of vaccines and other products derived from abortion. Other people are concerned regarding the potential long-term health effects (on their own bodies) of all of the current COVID “vaccines,” which have not been subject to long-term testing, and have only been approved by FDA under an Emergency Use Authorization.”
Later that evening on March 19, Dean Laughlin notified dental school personnel and students that the vaccine would not be required if they opted to continue nasal swab testing and wearing N-95 masks that they had been issued. He stated, “The School of Dentistry will comply with all ADA and religious objections according to the law. In those events, we will make every reasonable effort to accommodate the student, resident, staff, or faculty member.”
Students from the LSU School of Dentistry had also notified their Louisiana House of Representatives. Representatives from 17 districts sent a letter to Dean Laughlin condemning the mandate and stating that individuals have “a right to make their medical decisions” and that “requiring an experimental vaccination violates the ethical standards of Emergency Use Authorization.”
Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver said, “Forcing any person to receive one of these COVID injections authorized for emergency use by the FDA is a violation of federal law. The COVID injections are still in the investigation and experimental phase. No employer or government may force or coerce anyone to take these injections. Federal law requires full informed consent.”
Used with the permission of Liberty Counsel.
Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.