Compulsory Covid jab for players – yes or no?

At present, there is a huge debate raging around the issue of compulsory Covid jabs for rugby players. What many people don’t realise, is the fact that the issue is a lot more complex than it may seem.

On the one hand, we have the fact that the current version of Covid is – in most cases – not severe. On the other hand, being vaccinated does not mean you cannot get sick – it only means that you are unlikely to die from it.

When you start looking at the bigger picture…

There are no less than SEVEN sides to the story:

1. It is your constitutional right to decide whether you want to be vaccinated or not.

2. When you choose to exercise that right, how will it affect others around you, and the people you deal with? Is it even reasonable to exercise that right when you know it will cause problems for other people?

3. Depending on the nature of their contracts, clubs and unions may end up having to pay people who fall ill. If a number of players fall ill, the club/union could end up having to carry expenses, while it still has to pay for replacement players.

4. What happens when some of the players – who were vaccinated – refuse to play if their teammates are not vaccinated? After all, the increased risk (to the vaccinated players) could mean them getting sick and missing matches, which would cost them their income from those matches.

5. On a larger scale, if some clubs and/or unions do present fully vaccinated teams, those teams might refuse to play against other teams who are not vaccinated.

6. Where does it end? If this rule is implemented in rugby, how many other sports types will follow suit? There are plenty of other types of sport where player and athletes find themselves in close proximity while competing, and hard, fast breathing by everyone on the scene means that everyone could be at risk of contracting Covid if one of those present have it.

Will all people partaking – and involved – in sport, eventually be required to be vaccinated to be able to compete, or even to practice?

How long before gyms only allow vaccinated members to come and work out?

7. The national state of disaster may be lifted soon – but that does not mean that the danger is past, especially not with such a large percentage of un-vaccinated people.

For people involved in sports, who come into contact with not only other players, but a large number of people in general, the risk will always be there.

With so many angles involved, and so many people affected, which way will it go?

Time will tell – but the conversation is (to say the very least) complex.

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