Open Letter to U of Waterloo Officials: Repeal the Covid Vaccination and Testing Mandates

October 2021

We, the undersigned employees and students, or parents of students, of the University of Waterloo (UW) herewith express our categorical disagreement with the COVID-related mandates recently imposed by the university administration on all employees and students (e-mail entitled “Mandatory vaccination and attestation,” dated August 16th, 2021; e-mail entitled “Proof of vaccination now required for campus access,” dated August 24th, 2021). These mandates are unlawful, and their net effect will be to cause disease, not to prevent it.

Are mandates for vaccination or “anonymous” declaration of vaccination status covered by existing contracts?

Any mandates involving vaccination, declaration of vaccination status, and testing violate all employment contracts that were concluded, as well as all offers of admission that were accepted before the mandates were imposed. The rights infringed upon include those enshrined in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the highest law of the land. Thus, the mandates are unlawful and invalid.

What is the rationale for coercing vaccination?

Generally speaking, vaccination can have a number of different outcomes:

  1. It can induce “sterilizing immunity,” which means that the vaccinated person cannot contract and spread the pathogen in question.

  2. It can induce protection without sterilization – manifest disease in vaccinated persons will be suppressed or at least mitigated, but they may still contract and spread the infection.

  3. It can fail altogether – vaccinated persons remain as likely to fall ill as the unvaccinated or become even more so.

Only the first outcome could justify, tenuously, a vaccine mandate. Widespread sterilizing immunity could be expected to result in “herd immunity,” meaning that the immunity of the many who were vaccinated would also protect the few who cannot be vaccinated, typically due to underlying deficiencies of their immune systems.

It is generally accepted, however, that none of the currently used COVID vaccines produces sterilizing immunity; in fact, recent data indicate that they provide at best marginal protection. Therefore, mandating COVID vaccination has no rational justification.

Why is natural immunity not considered?

More than one year into the so-called pandemic, very many people have already been infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus and have acquired natural immunity. It has been shown that this immunity is much more robust than that conferred by the vaccines; such an outcome is indeed to be expected. Accordingly, those with natural immunity cannot possibly derive any additional benefit or protection from getting vaccinated. On the contrary, they are at increased risk of grave adverse events from the vaccines. Thus, even if there were valid reasons for mandating vaccination – which is not the case – the very first order of business should still be to offer tests for existing immunity, and to permanently exempt from vaccination those who test positive. This failure to account for natural immunity alone suffices to prove that the vaccine mandates imposed by the UW administration are unscientific, vexatious, and reckless.

Healthy people don’t transmit COVID-19

While PCR methods have their legitimate uses in diagnosing infectious diseases, there is no good reason for using them on persons who are not sick. Numerous studies have confirmed that the SARS-CoV-2 virus can be detected in cell culture only in samples from patients who are clinically sick, or whose symptoms subsided only a few short days ago. Those same studies determined that viral nucleic acids remained detectable by PCR in samples for weeks and even months after cell cultures had turned negative. Only cell cultures detect live viruses; in contrast, PCR will also detect non-viable virus particles and even fragments of viral nucleic acids.

A very large study conducted in Wuhan, China, which enrolled almost 10 million people, failed to trace any cases of clinical disease to contagion from PCR-positive but asymptomatic individuals. All of these findings indicate that a positive PCR test alone does not translate to contagiousness. The testing mandates imposed on those members of the UW community who refuse to provide proof of vaccination are therefore without any scientific basis. Moreover, the very frequent repetition of these tests – twice weekly – will harm the very tender mucous membranes of the nasal cavity, which unlike those (e.g. in the oral cavity) are not able to withstand mechanical stress. Such frequently repeated trauma will cause pain and bacterial infections. This scientifically baseless and burdensome testing schedule is clearly designed to make people’s lives miserable and to pressure them into getting vaccinated.

Are UW administrators really unaware of the numerous grave adverse effects of the COVID vaccines?

Several leading UW administrators – notably President Vivek Goel, Provost James Rush, and VP Research Charmaine Dean – come from a public health or biomedical science background. Professional due diligence should therefore have acquainted them with the many kinds of severe adverse effects of the vaccines that have been reported in the medical literature. While the literature so far contains only case reports or small-scale studies on adverse events, a very large number of vaccine-related deaths and injuries is evident in the adverse events reporting systems of the U.S, the U.K., and the European Union. Even these systems, however, do not reflect the full magnitude of the problem. The independent advocacy group “America’s Frontline Doctors,” whose membership includes many very experienced physicians, has filed for an injunction against the existing vaccine emergency use authorizations, asserting that as many as 55,000 vaccine-related deaths have been reported to the federal authorities in the U.S. alone. Over and above these deaths, there are even more cases of grave and disabling disease such as heart attack, stroke, myocarditis, and multi-organ inflammatory disease. Such cases have been reported across all age groups.

This catastrophic outcome must be weighed against the tenuous benefits of vaccination. It must also be weighed against the minuscule risk of grave disease which the virus poses to persons of all ages without underlying disease, and particularly to adolescents and young adults such as our students. The risk-benefit balance of COVID vaccination is unambiguously negative. These vaccines should no longer be called “experimental,” because the experiment has already ended in failure. Any further continuation of this failed “experiment” amounts to the wilful infliction of bodily harm.

The vaccine mandates are divisive

Both the vaccinated and the unvaccinated can contract the virus and then spread it. On the other hand, members of neither group will actually spread the virus as long as they are not themselves ill.

People may object to vaccination for various reasons, including medical, religious, and philosophical ones. Whichever the case may be, the choice to get vaccinated remains a personal one, as guaranteed by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Regardless of our choices, there is no need for us to be afraid of each other. For too long we have allowed ourselves to be alienated from one another and divided, for fear of a virus that is no more deadly or dangerous than the flu. It is high time that we leave this fear behind and resume our normal lives – in private, but also at work. UW’s vaccine mandates won’t help us do that; instead, they will further entrench fear and distrust. They will keep us divided at a time when the UW community should be coming together to revive the confident and forward-looking spirit for which Waterloo is well known.

We urge UW administrators to repeal the mandates.

Beyond their divisiveness, the vaccine mandates will inflict more tangible harm. Given the size of UW’s population of students and employees, it is certain that coerced vaccinations will result in severe injury and quite possibly even deaths. It is urgent that these irrational and unlawful coercive measures be repealed before it is too late.


NOTE: For a current list of signatories to the letter and an updated timeline of events related to the vaccine mandate at the University of Waterloo, see our webpage.