Reading Time: 2 minutes 'Some ethical vegans may disagree with vaccinations on the basis that they will inevitably have been tested on animals' Credit: Adobe. Do not use without permission.
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Vegans will be exempt from COVID-19 vaccinations if their workplaces enforce compulsory policies, according to legal experts.

Moreover, employers may be at risk of legal action if they ‘insist’, reports claim.

Exempt vegans

Under employment law, vegans in the UK will not have to have COVID-19 vaccinations if told to do so by employers – experts say.

It’s come as a host of firms now expect staff to take both jabs – with giants such as Netflix and Google ordering US employees to vaccinate before returning to work.

This also includes all care home workers in England, under government order: unless they have a ‘medical exemption’.

But vegans who oppose will be allowed to, and their bosses could face legal action as a result, Evening Standard reports.

Moreover, a spokesperson for the law firm Lewis Silkin told the Telegraph that ethical vegans who are against the vaccine may be able to claim constructive dismissal if forced to get injected.

‘Some ethical vegans may disagree with vaccinations on the basis that they will inevitably have been tested on animals. Ethical veganism has previously been found to amount to a belief, capable of being protected’, they added.

Changing COVID-19 rules

A host of countries have rolled out ‘vaccine passports’, from the UK to the EU, Israel and China. The pass shows when an individual has been fully vaccinated. Moreover, it allows workers to travel more easily.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid announced UK businesses would be ‘encouraged’, but not required, to use the NHS Covid Pass. This would be in ‘high risk settings’.

Additionally, Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed only double jabbed people can be allowed entry into nightclubs.

But the considerations have been branded ‘discriminatory’ by critics, including MPs.

For example, Graham Brady told Sky News: “Fundamentally, people’s decision on whether to be vaccinated or not must be a personal decision for them to make. Based on their own assessment of the benefits and risks.”

Compulsory COVID-19 vaccinations

Last December, the pharmaceutical company Pfizer came under fire for involving controversial animal testing in developing its COVID-19 vaccine.

However, the vaccine does not contain ingredients derived from animals, and many vegan doctors suggest vegans still take it.

The Vegan Society even released a statement endorsing it.

It reads: “It has never been more important for us to talk about the definition of veganism in the context of medications, including vaccines.

“The definition of veganism recognizes that it is not always possible or practicable to avoid animal use, which is particularly relevant to medical situations.

“In the case of COVID-19, vaccination will play a fundamental role in tackling the pandemic and saving lives. …All vaccines currently are tested on animals.

“At this stage it is impossible to have a vaccine that has been created without animal use.”

Emily is a News and Features Writer for Plant Based News. She has previously worked as a journalist in Devon, UK, reporting on local issues from politics to the environment.