In the United States, Cornell University students can use their “person of color” status to be exempt from the university's requirement to get a flu shot.
“Students who identify as Black, Indigenous or People of Color (BIPOC) may have personal concerns due to historical injustices and current events,” says Cornell’s vaccine campaign FAQ.
Students can send a private message to the health department to request a non-medical or non-religious exemption for vaccination. For more information, the FAQ links to a “specially for students of color” page, which aims to help minority students who are worried about having to get a flu shot.
“We recognize that, due to longstanding systemic racism and health inequities in this country, individuals from some marginalized communities may have concerns about needing to agree to such requirements,” explains the page. “For example, historically, the bodies of Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color (BIPOC) have been mistreated, and used by people in power, sometimes for profit or medical gain.”
Cornell therefore considers it “understandable that the current Compact requirements may feel suspect or even exploitative to some BIPOC members of the Cornell community”.
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