Rome Newsroom, Dec 7, 2021 / 06:00 am
Austria’s Catholic bishops commented on Monday on the government’s likely decision to impose a COVID-19 vaccine mandate in the country in February, calling the obligation permissible if used as a last resort.
In a Dec. 6 statement, the bishops’ conference acknowledged that “compulsory vaccination is a serious encroachment on the bodily integrity and freedom of the individual,” reported CNA Deutsch, CNA’s German-language news partner.
“It is therefore only permissible if, taking into account proportionality, all other options have been exhausted to protect the population — in the case of the pandemic, the health system, and thus human lives,” the bishops said.
They went on: “It is ultimately the responsibility of the government to assess whether the preconditions for a temporary condition are met and whether a temporary vaccination obligation is now the appropriate means of protecting the common good.”