Over 50 PPA staff granted Covid vaccine legal protection
A court has granted initial legal protection to more than 50 Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) personnel following a class action where they demanded the annulment of a PPA directive to get vaccinated.
The individuals who filed the class action are in danger of being dismissed, lawyers say.
Attorney Jaanika Reilik-Bakhoff says the court should be able to assess the legitimacy before large numbers of people get dismissed from work.
The complainants applied for initial legal protection since without it, they could have been dismissed as early as next week. On November 11, the court decided to grant 30 days' protection to all officials, meaning that during that period, the officials cannot be dismissed due to their not being vaccinated, the law firm announced.
"Another dispute regarding the same topic is also in process at the Supreme Court, and if the court decides that a preventive review of such directives is allowed, it could save thousands more people from losing their jobs," Reilik Bakhoff said.
The lawyer added that the introduction of compulsory vaccination via directives is something new and unusual in the Estonian legal system, and no legal basis has been provided for any of these.
"Throughout the pandemic, it has been stated in Estonia that we have voluntary vaccination, but unfortunately its definition has suffered over the past year. (Indirect) compulsory vaccination means that where a person has some restrictions arising from not getting it administered at school, work or elsewhere - so we cannot talk about voluntary vaccination if people get dismissed from work as a result of not having it. There is no legal basis for compulsory vaccination; this can be established at employer-level by a directive," Reilik-Bakhoff said.
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Editor: Roberta Vaino