Growing Minnesota movement seeks freedom from vaccine mandates

Each rally has turned out many people bearing signs and posters declaring their opposition to vaccine mandates.

Women hold signs at a health freedom rally outside of Fairview Southdale Hospital in Edina (Kami Ohara/Facebook).

All over the state, Minnesota citizens are rallying together to show their support for medical freedom and protest the COVID-19 vaccine mandates that are being forced on many health care workers.

At a St. Cloud medical freedom rally last week, Dr. Neil Shah spoke to a crowd about the threat posed to “civil liberties” by vaccine mandates.

Shah is a doctor, the owner of a dermatology practice, and a candidate for governor of Minnesota.

A poster displayed at a health freedom rally outside of Methodist Hospital in St. Louis Park (Kami Ohara/Facebook).

“We cannot allow our civil liberties to be eroded by tyrants, whether they are governmental or whether they’re corporate,” Shah said through a megaphone.

It is not about the vaccine itself, Shah said, but rather about the lack of health freedom. But it is also “not unreasonable to have concerns about long-term safety” for those getting the vaccine, according to Shah.

“We have short-term data. We do not have long-term data, and I am concerned that the FDA is rushing through the approval process,” Shah said.

He advised those in attendance that the issue of vaccine mandates will not be fixed over night. One protest will not do the job, Shah said, but it will take convincing politicians “what freedom actually means.”

“It’s going to take a lot of resistance over a long time. It’s going to take getting the political class to understand that we are serious,” Shah said.

There have been at least four other health freedom rallies in addition to the one that took place in St. Cloud. Rallies have been held outside of Fairview Southdale Hospital in Edina, Fairview St. John’s Hospital in Maplewood, Lakeview Hospital in Stillwater, and Methodist Hospital in St. Louis Park, according to videos posted on social media.

Each rally has turned out many people bearing signs and posters declaring their opposition to vaccine mandates.

“Where there is risk, there must be choice,” read one poster, while another asked, “Do you trust the CDC?”

“Coercion is not consent,” said another sign, and “I worked without a vaccine, now I will be fired without one.”

Health systems including M Health Fairview, Sanford Health, Allina Health, and the Mayo Clinic are requiring their staff to be vaccinated for COVID-19 as soon as the vaccine is FDA-approved.

Employees of Minnesota state agencies and the Minnesota State system are also required to get the vaccine, as well as staff and students at all five University of Minnesota campuses, regardless of full FDA approval.

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