Donato Greco

Compulsory Vaccination for Specific Categories of Workers and the Economic and Social Consequences of Non-Compliance Under Scrutiny by the Constitutional Court

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With decision n. 15 of 9 February 2023, the Italian Constitutional Court upheld the legitimacy of the compulsory vaccination against COVID-19 imposed on specific categories of workers and of the consequences of non-compliance. This contribution analyses the reasoning of both the referring courts and the Constitutional Court, to understand whether the latter’s conclusion can be said to be persuasive. In this respect, it is first maintained that the Court was correct in justifying the limitation on the human right not to be subject to unwanted medical treatments since the right to health entails the State’s obligation to protect public health. In a similar vein, the legitimacy of the exclusion from reallocation to different duties for voluntarily non-vaccinated workers seems to be adequately justified by the Court. Indeed, reallocation capacity is limited by the need to ensure the effective functioning of the utility services concerned and the prevention purposes of the measure. What appears to be questionable is the Court’s finding that the exclusion of suspended workers from the benefit of any form of social subsidy is constitutionally legitimate. A more careful consideration of international human rights law might perhaps have led the Court to a different conclusion.


  • compulsory vaccination
  • exclusion of repêchage
  • economic and social consequences of non-compliance
  • human rights
  • Italian Constitutional Court


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