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Legal Aid defends controversial case

Victoria Legal Aid is defending taking on a case which will see a mother head to court to stop her children being immunised.

The woman, who has three children, is challenging a Children’s Court order for her children to be immunised while they are in the temporary care of the Department of Human Services.

Health experts are angry at the decision and the state government fears the Legal Aid challenge could set a dangerous precedent for every child in state care.

Victoria Legal Aid’s Nicole Rich says the case is about testing parental rights for families in the child protection system, not the medical merits of vaccination.

“The case isn’t about vaccination, it’s about what the powers of the government are when they want to override the wishes of parents,” she told Neil Mitchell.

“It might feel like it’s a bit silly – children should be vaccinated.

“But it’s going to have implications long-term so we do need to clarify the point now.”

But Neil Mitchell said it was “bizarre.”

“I understand the legal point, but what about a dose of reality?” he questioned.

“What about common sense?

“This is public money being used to fight against public interest.”

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