Waleed Aly was spectacularly gagged last night on The Project while arguing against employers having the right to refuse work to employees that haven't been vaccinated against Covid-19.
Aly engaged in the heated discussion with co-host Rachel Corbett after the program aired a segment on the possibility that people may in future be denied work if they opt not to be vaccinated against the virus.
While Corbett argued the inoculation would make it easier for people to safely return to work and help prevent further outbreaks, Aly described it as "frightening" that bosses could potentially dictate people's health choices.
“This is such a good idea for travel ... I don’t mind if it becomes something for everyday life. If you have to have the little tick in your passport to go to work," Corbett said.
She acknowledged people who weren't able to get the vaccine should still be able to work "because we don’t need to be 100 per cent vaccinated but we need to be at a decent percentage".
Aly disagreed, arguing employees should have the freedom to make their own choice about the vaccine.
“Hang on. I don’t want employers to have that much power over your decision,” he said.
Corbett responded saying she thought it was "sensible and let’s get the jab and get into work".
“There’s a difference between saying it’s sensible and encourage people to take a vaccine and a measure that could have all kinds of consequences down the track,” Aly said.
Corbett said the benefits would outweigh the costs.
“What about the consequences to another outbreak happening or a business closing down and all those kind of things?” she said.
This is now the second time during Covid that I find myself AGREEING with Waleed Aly.
But they cut him off. pic.twitter.com/JzC9lER3L3
— Avi Yemini 🇦🇺🇮🇱 (@OzraeliAvi) February 23, 2021
“To me the consequences of an employer being able to dictate your health decisions is profound... imagine if they made rules like that about things you didn’t agree with, it would be frightening,” Aly said.
Corbett reiterated her point that if it meant keeping businesses open, it would be worth it.
“In this situation your business could shut down and that’s been a huge problem. If that could keep your business open, that’s reasonable?” she said.
Aly was midway through another fiery response when he was cut short, telling viewers he had been told to "shut up".
“I think that’s a fair point. I’m being told I have to shut up now,” he said.
Survey reveals 64 per cent of Aussies want vaccine
A survey conducted by the government included in the segment revealed 64 per cent of Australians were keen to get the vaccine, with 27 per cent not sure and nine per cent opposed to the idea.
The Australian population is expected to be mostly vaccinated by October, with NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian hopeful her state would be vaccinated within months.
Australia has recorded 26 days of zero local cases so far this year, including six of the past seven days.
The first vaccines were administered in Australia this week, with an infectious disease expert who treated Australia's first coronavirus patient the first Victorian to receive the Pfizer jab.
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