Springfield College COVID-19 mandate opposition

Letter to Springfield College

Dear Dr. Mary Beth Cooper, College Senior Leadership, and Board of Trustees,  

We are a group of Springfield College stakeholders:  parents, students, families, faculty, staff, alumni, families of prospective students, and others within the Springfield College Community writing this urgent letter of concern to you to request a critical modification to Springfield College’s COVID-19 booster vaccine mandate.  Per the Springfield College’s newly announced booster mandate, all students and employees must obtain a booster shot by March 1. Those who do not comply will be restricted from specific activities and require ongoing testing.  All of us signing this letter, and especially our children who attend Springfield College, have already complied with the College’s prior immunization requirements and approved exemptions.

We fully understand and empathize with the difficult position the Springfield College administration finds itself in during this pandemic. Nevertheless, we have very serious safety concerns about the recent vaccine booster mandate at Springfield College. It is clear that the College’s administration has not exercised sufficient circumspection in creating clearly delineated medically rational “off-ramps” from all COVID mandates for those who are already well immune to COVID-19. It is a serious concern that a medically unnecessary third booster shot could prove dangerous and irreparably harmful in such already well immune individuals as well as to young adults who are at very low risk for hospitalization and death due to this virus.   This booster mandate is not completely safe, not fully effective against the current variant, and unethical. Students have struggled beneath COVID decrees for two years, but the college’s booster mandate and other ongoing mandates are highly concerning.  Springfield College (as a science based, higher education, academic institution) claims to rely upon “expert” opinion in structuring its COVID protocols. 

We also understand that the college is participating in the White House Covid-19 Vaccine Challenge (started in summer of 2021)[https://www.whitehouse.gov/covidcollegechallenge/] which potentially has a federal financial incentive to vaccinate/boost as many students as possible.

The college prides itself on balancing bodies, attitude, and emotions which is not being demonstrated in the current, ongoing COVID protocols.  

These are our specific concerns with the boosters:

Safety Concerns:

  • An advisory committee at the FDA and CDC initially declined to recommend the COVID booster for those under the age of 65. ·       The FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee made an official recommendation to approve Pfizer’s application for boosters only for those 65 and older and certain high-risk populations after rejecting, in a 16-2 vote, Pfizer’s application for broader approval for the general population. The committee cited a lack of data on potential adverse effects, particularly the risks of developing myocarditis and pericarditis. However, the FDA chose to disregard this concern and granted “approval” anyways. ​​
  • Even this “approval” is itself questionable. The FDA only granted approval to Comirnaty, a legally distinct version of the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine that is not actually available in the United States. The version of the vaccine currently available in the US remains under Emergency Use Authorization, not formal approval.
  • Similarly, the CDC’s initial recommendation that Americans under the age of 65 receive boosters was made against the counsel of its own Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, which voted to recommend boosters only for those over the age of 65 or who have underlying conditions. The CDC director overruled this vote in an unusual departure from agency protocol. The committee later reversed course, recommending a booster for 12-17 year olds. The reasoning behind this change remains unclear, given that the initial concerns regarding myocarditis and pericarditis is unresolved in teenagers and young men.
    • Vaccine-induced heart issues merit legitimate concern, especially for young males. A recent Danish study found that “pharmacovigilance reports, health system surveillance studies, and case series suggest an association between SARS-CoV-2 vaccination and myocarditis and myopericarditis. This association is thought to occur particularly after the second booster dose of mRNA vaccines BNT162b2 (Pfizer-BioNTech) and mRNA-1273 (Moderna).” 
    • An analysis published in the New England Journal of Medicine reached similar conclusions, particularly in males between the ages of 12 and 29. 
    •  A recent review of a Nature article has led the UK to not permitting men < 40 years of age to receive the mRNA vaccines due to cardiac concerns.
    • Meanwhile, a new study published in the Journal Obstetrics & Gynecology found a positive association between COVID vaccination and increased menstrual cycle length. According to the director of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, “Nobody expected [the COVID vaccine] to affect the menstrual system, because the information wasn’t being collected in the early vaccine studies.” The authors note that “questions remain about other possible changes in menstrual cycles, such as menstrual symptoms, unscheduled bleeding, and changes in the quality and quantity of menstrual bleeding.”
    • On January 25, 2022, JAMA published data titled “Myocarditis Cases Reported After mRNA-Based COVID-19 Vaccination in the US From December 2020 to August 2021” which concluded that the risk of myocarditis after mRNA vaccination was highest among adolescent males and young men.

We would like to call your attention to more than 140 published scientific articles regarding C19 vaccine adverse events related to children and young adults (see references below).  

Lack of effectiveness against current variant:

Comprehensive evidence suggests that the level of vaccination does not have a positive influence on lowering COVID cases.

  • On these very lines, CDC Director contended in August 2021 that vaccines no longer prevent transmission, despite previous assurances.
  • Moreover, the original vaccine regime has proven ineffective over time, with an Israeli study showing that effectiveness declined from 95% in January 2021 to 39% in June 2021.  When first introduced, the boosters were posited as a way to rebuild the vaccine’s effectiveness. Yet, the COVID booster contains the same formula as the original which means it, too, loses efficacy.
  • This efficacy has decreased even further with the Omicron variant, which is currently 100% of all COVID cases within Massachusetts, per the Massachusetts DOH.
  • To this point, Cornell, which currently has both a mask and vaccine requirement, and a 97% on-campus vaccination rate, recently experienced a surge of COVID cases (December 2021) which led to fall semester exams online and shut down the campus. Out of the 930 confirmed cases, “Virtually every case of the Omicron variant to date has been found in fully vaccinated students, a portion of whom had also received a booster shot,” Vice President for University Relations stated.
  • Ongoing data indicates that children, teenagers, and young adults are at very low risk to the current variant, showing mild or no symptoms regardless of vaccination status.

Lack of acknowledgement of previous infection/immunity:

  • As it stands, the college’s vaccine requirement cannot be satisfied with proof of T-cell immunity or a positive antibody or antigen test. This is unreasonable, as those who have been vaccinated not only have increased risk for infection, but an increased risk for symptomatic infection, in comparison to those possessing natural immunity. This is made clear by a recent Israeli study, which “demonstrated that natural immunity confers longer lasting and stronger protection against infection, symptomatic disease and hospitalization caused by the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2, compared to the BNT162b2 two-dose vaccine-induced immunity.” 
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci has labeled such persons, “bullet proof” with “hybrid immunity”. To vaccinate such already well immune persons with an added booster by administrative mandate is medically unnecessary and, thus, only risks serious harm – possibly irreparably to some.  

Unethical Nature of Experimental Vaccine Mandates:

For the first time in history, colleges are requiring experimental vaccination (i.e. Not FDA approved) as a condition of attendance and employment. The college’s warning of exclusion and loss of “privileges” constitutes unjustifiable pressure, especially considering the vaccine’s experimental nature; this absolutely qualifies as an element of “duress,” “overreaching,” and “coercion.”  Rather than allow students to engage in the personal and subjective process of making their own risk-assessments concerning vaccination, the college refuses to allow us to freely consent or decline.  

For the past two academic years, we’ve endured (and continue to endure) mandatory invasive COVID testing (i.e. student athletes particularly); a laundry list of restrictions on movement and socialization enforced by a suffocating surveillance-and-reporting apparatus; indoor and outdoor mask wearing, quarantines (10 days vs. 5 days which is not aligned with CDC guidance), online classes; barred access to countless campus amenities and resources; and, now, vaccine and booster requirements with limited exemptions, all while footing the same annual tuition.  

Ultimately it is remarkably irresponsible how colleges have stuck with failed policies despite evolved science and the change of the pandemic landscape with high immunity, therapeutics and treatments, and a less severe variant.  The science and nature of this virus has evolved since 2020, but yet we continue to follow policies that existed in 2020.  

Therefore, with this letter, we are respectfully requesting the following from the Springfield College’s administration:  

1. We request that Springfield College withdraw its unsafe, ineffective, and unethical vaccine and booster mandates.  Allow each individual to make a choice for what is best for themselves or work with their primary care physician to determine how best to protect themselves from COVID.

2. We request that the college show transparency by indicating those responsible for creating and implementing its COVID guidance, especially with regards to vaccination and restrictions. We also request the names of those responsible for reviewing and approving any mandates be made public to students/faculty.

3. We request an end to COVID testing of asymptomatic students and faculty (reserving testing for symptomatic students/faculty).  These tests could be utilized within the community where there is a shortage of tests and higher need.  As you note in the college COVID guidance/FAQ’s, most students with COVID thus far have had mild or no symptoms.  Asymptomatic spread is extremely rare.  The never-ending testing of asymptomatic indivduals is not necessary and needs to cease.

4. We request that the college follow CDC guidance around quarantining; quarantines should be reduced to 5 days, as long as the student is no longer symptomatic/showing improvement in symptoms per the CDC.   We know that your intent at Springfield College is to protect the community. However, in the rush to protect, we ask that you not lose sight of rational scientific and ethical reasoning. We also ask you to consider the mental health challenges that these restrictions are causing your student body without need.  

Within this letter, Springfield College Administrators and Board of Trustees are in possession of all referred articles/publications (noted above and listed below).

Thank you  

References:

https://vinayprasadmdmph.substack.com/p/vaccine-effectiveness-goes-down-the https://vinayprasadmdmph.substack.com/p/uk-now-reports-myocarditis-stratified https://www.rwmalonemd.com/references https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2021/s1227-isolation-quarantine-guidance.html https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6932a1.htm#:~:text=Younger%20adults%2C%20racial%2F,and%20elevated%20suicidal%20ideation https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2788346


Springfield College stakeholders: parents, students, families, faculty, staff, alumni, families of prospective students, and others within the Springfield College Community    Contact the author of the petition

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