A B.C. father who printed a blog post and submitted it to court in an attempt to stop the mother of his children from vaccinating them against COVID-19 has lost the case, in part because the judge ruled his evidence inadmissible.
The family law case represents another instance in which an anti-vaccine parent failed to convince a Canadian judge that vaccination posed a significant risk to their child and ultimately lost decision-making power in the matter.
The couple at the center of the latest case, identified in court documents as CH and AT, have two children, aged seven and nine.
Provincial Court Judge Wilson Lee’s ruling, which was posted online this week, noted that “both parties clearly love their children and want the best for them.”
“They disagree on this one issue, which has been debated throughout our society since the advent of the pandemic and the development of vaccines,” Lee wrote.
But in court proceedings, disagreements are settled with the help of convincing and reliable evidence – and the judge concluded that the mother, Mrs T., was the only one who presented any at their hearing.
She brought letters from their children’s doctors recommending that each of them get the COVID-19 vaccine, as well as information from BC Children’s Hospital, the Government of Canada, the Ministry of Health and ImmunizeBC, all supporting the vaccination safety.
The father, MH, submitted two printouts, including an unnamed WordPress blog that discusses materials related to the development of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Lee concluded that the print was not admissible as evidence.
“At best, the blog post is an opinion that meets none of the requirements of an expert report,” he wrote. “Even if the blog post were admissible as evidence, it only raises unsubstantiated suspicion.”
The other print, which was missing as much as a source, described the typical timeline for vaccine development. The judge acknowledged that the COVID-19 vaccine had been developed more quickly.
But drawing on established case law regarding the COVID-19 vaccine, Lee noted several recurring principles, including that “COVID-19 vaccination is deemed to be in the best interests of a child” and that a “wait-and-see approach “of the kind advocated by MH “is not in a child’s best interests, especially when weighed against the risks of COVID-19 itself.”
“The evidence presented by MH does not rebut these presumptions,” Lee wrote.
“I direct that AT shall have parental responsibility and authorization to obtain for the children the COVID-19 vaccination, including two doses, and a booster if and when recommended, without the consent of CH”