Vaccine reluctance

She previously had Guillan-Barre syndrome from a vaccine and all of her Drs advised against it yet she was denied a medical exemption. While students are being mandated for vaccines, employees are not.

I wonder if she could take that one to court. It’d be worth a try IMO.

I only know the one student I mentioned who had a bad reaction to another vaccine and his college easily gave him the exemption (with the doctor’s recorded note of the incident). He’s going to college in MD, not HI.

my D’s college is the same; vax for all students, but not staff. Why do you think that is? because students have a choice of schools, but employees can’t easily switch employers?

In many cases there are probably union rules that limit what the schools can require of employees.


Employees aren’t living in dorms (most, anyway), some have unions to worry about, and most employees can keep their distance by standing in front of the class, behind plexiglass in offices, stores, and dining halls.

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The student above does not easily have a choice for schools. The mandate came way after deadlines for acceptances and according to what I’ve read she has lost over $200,000 in scholarships. And employees do have a choice to look for another job.
If you can mandate for students you can mandate for employees. Not fair to pick and choose who the mandate applies to.


So what you are saying is that anybody not living in a dorm, or are in a union, or can use plexiglass should not have to get the vaccine.

This should please some people. Family friend’s child asked a diocesan Catholic priest to provide a letter to support a conscience objection regarding the use of a vaccine that makes use of fetal cell lines in order to get an exemption and the priest understood the issue and wanted to help her but his superiors have instructed priests not to.

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It won’t please me. I’d rather the student understand how her getting vaxed could save lives - doing her part to help other people. If she’s pro-life, doing one’s part saving the living should count for something in her mind.

I suspect that’s how the priest’s superiors see it TBH.


Isn’t Guillain-Barré Syndrome only possibly associated with the J&J - Janssen vaccine, not the Pfizer - BioNTech or Moderna vaccines?

Four years at BYU Hawaii costs at most about $126k (CJCLDS) or $158k (non-CJCLDS), so no way she lost $200k in scholarships.


Yes. Current reports are for the Janssen vaccine. However, this is not someone who is just afraid of the reports so can jump to another vaccine. This is someone who has had GBS from a previous vaccine, not a Covid vaccine. GBS attacks the nervous system and all of the vaccines for Covid now have reports of some side effects of the nervous system. My brother has residual numbness and tingling in his hands and feet from the Moderna.
Since she has had a major issue with a previous vaccine (not Covid) that attacked her nervous system, her Drs have advised her against the vaccine. I’m sure she also has a very good reason for a major “reluctance” to getting the Covid vaccine, any of them. I certainly wouldn’t be putting myself at that risk after such a serious side effect in the past.
Since employees aren’t required to get the vaccine, there will be people on campus who haven’t had it. So why would this one student with a legitimate reason not be allowed on campus? It makes no sense to me.


No, what it says is that the union has negotiated with the school what the union employees can and can not do. Until there are new negotiations with the union, the schools hands are tied.

I am positive that if a school has mandated that it’s students are vaccinated, then it’s choice would be that it’s employees also be vaccinated.

Someone who may be at risk of Guillain-Barré Syndrome needs to be wary of any viral infections (including COVID-19), since actual viral infections are known to trigger it. I.e. getting actual COVID-19 may be more of a risk (of Guillain-Barré Syndrome as well as other things) than getting a COVID-19 vaccine, particularly a non-viral-vector one.

Note that the J&J - Janssen vaccine uses a viral vector, but the Pfizer - BioNTech and Moderna vaccines do not, so it is no surprise that there may be an association to Guillain-Barré Syndrome with the J&J - Janssen vaccine but not the mRNA vaccines.


How are colleges going to do that? Nothing in current contracts requires employees to get a Covid vaccine. If they issue a mandate are they going to fire staff for not complying? On what grounds? They won’t have violated the terms of their contracts.

Colleges can ask the unions to get vaccinated but I don’t think they’ll force the issue. Staff members have had a difficult ~18 months (more work, increased stress, but zero raises). The administration is educating, talking about the hope for a return to a normal work experience, reminding staff of paid time off for vaccination appointments, and offering gift cards to everyone who’s been vaccinated, etc. Why try to force the issue when there are so many successful, less heavyhanded ways to get to the same place?

Private schools can make the rules they want.

For this student, I would suggest they go through an appeal process (I expect there is one), hopefully her docs would be up for that.

Her docs know best, and there’s just not good data to go on. Does she get regular flu vaccines, and if so, any reaction to those? Another consideration is that her risk of getting Guillain Barre from a covid infection is greater than from the covid vaccine. I wish her good luck no matter what the outcome.

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As I mentioned above, UChicago has just mandated the vaccine for employees. Exemptions are religious and medical. There might be other “authorized” exemptions as well and I suspect those would have to do with bargaining as opposed to “conscience.”

Seems to me that if the school is 1) going to mandate the students be vaccinated and 2) is facing the possibility of re-masking unless they reach a certain threshold of “herd immunity” then 3) it makes sense to have everyone there vaccinated. Better than re-enforcing the indoor masks. Of course it might depend as well on how many in the community can’t be vaccinated. Apparently UChicago determined that this number is quite small. They explicitly said their goal is a campus-wide vax rate that is as close to 100% as possible.

Yes, she certainly is at risk with getting Covid also. But injecting a possible known cause in my system that can cause a terrible syndrome that’s been experienced before. That’s a 100% exposure to a known (albeit rare) side effect. Not as rare for her as it’s already happened.

Not choosing the vaccine puts you at risk of Covid and potentially GBS. The difference is, there is not a 100% risk of exposure. If she follows protocols, stays socially distant, masks up and follows all the guidelines Then her risk of getting COVID is lower. There’s a chance she will never get Covid.

So while her choices aren’t great, I personally would not choose the option of injecting a potential problem.


Regarding the BYU-HI student, I think most of us are getting one side of the story(?). The point about the mRNA vaccines being different is a legitimate one - these are a different technology from other vaccines. Did the student re-consult with her doctors about whether Pfizer or Moderna would work? What are the details of the ruling? We don’t have this information.


Once the vaccines get permanent approval (which is in the works) it will be easier for employers to mandate vaccination.


Because it’s important to know any biases in sources, that story is published on a right-wing news website. I’m not saying the young woman isn’t high risk or doesn’t have a case, but we don’t necessarily have an unbiased take on her story.

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