Updated: Aug 25, 2021
In a letter a group of Swiss police express their concern about the attack on people’s freedom.
“If there is a risk that measures run counter to the interests of the responsible public and that their basic rights are disproportionately curtailed, many police officers will no longer be willing to implement them.”
On their website it says: “We are an association of police officers from all cantons of Switzerland. In addition, we have committed ourselves to the democratic constitutional state to protect and uphold the fundamental rights of everyone to the best of our knowledge and belief. However, we are increasingly observing negative developments within society, especially in our direct contact with the population.
“We are also affected as private individuals, as fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters. We see the restrictions on fundamental rights to this extent and over the previous period in contradiction to proportionality and the greatest good of a democracy: freedom. The question arises as to what justifies these restrictions. These questions need to be answered.”
The police officers have also asked the Association of Swiss Police Officers (VSPB) to answer the Federal Council’s open questions and to speak out clearly against mandatory vaccination for police officers. The VSPB replied as follows: “To consult the Federal Council as a whole on the points listed seems to be going too far here and would also exceed our competencies.”
The Federation is convinced that this group represents a minority of the 26 500 members of the VSBP. “The police are citizens of this country and they have the right to have their own opinion. They are at the service of the population and responsible for its protection and security. But they are also under the orders of their employers, the police forces.” The VSPB underlined the good work carried out by the police officers during this difficult period: “For that, they deserve our thanks.”
The concerned Swiss police officers also addressed the basic rights listed in the Swiss constitution, which they believe have come under attack since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and would be temporarily or permanently restricted.
These rights include:
Right to personal freedom, Art. 10 Para. 2 BV
Right to primary education, Art. 19 BV
Freedom of assembly, Art. 22 BV
Freedom of association, Art. 23 BV
Economic freedom, Art. 27 BV
Political rights, Art. 34 BV
Freedom of the media, Art. 17 BV
Protection of privacy, Art. 13 BV
These claims were welcomed by vaccine-skeptics on the Telegram social network. Users hailed their decision with “respect”, “bravo” and “great, we support you”. When contacted, the VSPB distanced itself from any threat of subordination, however.
For his part, Adrian Gaugler of the Conference of Cantonal Police Commanders noted: “An agent who refuses to apply a law in force is punishable.” He nevertheless said he understood the concerns of the group.