Dutch justice has authorized a 12-year-old child to be vaccinated against Covid-19, despite objections from his vaccine-skeptical father, to be able to visit his dying grandmother, according to a judgment made public Thursday.

The defense of the young boy's mother argued that a Covid-19 vaccination would reduce the risk of transmitting the coronavirus to his dying grandmother.

Children aged 12 to 17 can be vaccinated in the Netherlands, but with the consent of both parents.

In this case, the parents of the young boy, whose identity has not been communicated, are divorced, and his mother has given his permission, unlike his father.

Judge Bart Tromp, of the district court of Groningen (north), on Tuesday authorized the young boy to be vaccinated given "the interests at stake" in this vaccination "in particular the interests of this minor".

Vaccines "are still in a trial phase", says father

In his judgment, which was not made public until Thursday, he ordered the young boy to be vaccinated "quickly" because his interests were more important than a possible appeal from the father's lawyers. According to court documents, the father, skeptical of vaccines and testing, refused to allow his son to receive a dose. However "the boy wanted to be vaccinated because he did not want to be contaminated and wanted to limit the risks of infecting other" people, according to the file.

The child's grandmother "suffers from lung cancer with metastases and is at the end of her life," the documents indicate. “The minor wants to spend as much time as possible with her, but he is not vaccinated. He is afraid of infecting his grandmother and is convinced that contamination, if it did occur, would constitute a mortal danger ”. The young boy felt that it was "difficult to speak to his father and felt that his arguments would not be heard", according to the file. The father believes that the vaccines "are still in a trial phase" and that they could pose "great risks to the reproductive organs in the long term".

But the judge stressed that the scientific basis for such assertions was not proven.

According to Dutch law, judges can make decisions in the best interests of the child if the parents disagree.

Vaccine skepticism is a growing concern in the Netherlands, with the leader of a far-right party having even defended anti-vaccine theses in parliament.

Demonstrations are expected this weekend with the entry into force of a health pass for customers of restaurants and bars.


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