Lisa Diaz, a mother of two from Wigan, England is being threatened with prosecution and the Family Court by Labour-run Wigan council at the instigation of her daughter’s school, Woodfield Primary.
Lisa, a leading member of SafeEdForAll (Safe Education For All) has a genetic blood disorder and is a vocal campaigner against the lack of COVID-19 mitigation measures in schools that is allowing the virus to run rampant. She initiated the global school strike against unsafe schools and regularly posts videos and tweets against the criminal agenda of “herd immunity”, which she has described as a “scorched earth” policy.
The global school strikes, held every Friday, have won support from parents in the UK, US, France, Germany, Spain, Sri Lanka, Japan, Australia and other countries. The World Socialist Web Site (WSWS) has supported and promoted the global online picket line against unsafe schools. Chairperson of the WSWS editorial board David North tweeted, “This is a vile attack by the Johnson gov’t on fundamental democratic rights and even the basic parental instinct to protect one’s children. The ruling class will not forgive Lisa for leading #SchoolStrike2021 against the criminal reopening of schools.”
Lisa is looking at Crowdfunding her legal case and has started the hashtag #IStandWithLisa. The WSWS urges all our readers to come to Lisa’s defence.
Lisa told the WSWS, “Wigan Council, at the instigation of Woodfield Primary School, is maliciously threatening me with prosecution. The letter says my daughter’s ‘poor attendance record’ gives ‘cause for concern’. But the spread of COVID in schools doesn’t cause any concern apparently.
“They are behaving so recklessly that the letter threatening prosecution says I must attend a meeting at the school on November 13, which is more than a fortnight ago! It claims that the meeting will be ‘socially distanced, the room ventilated’, but this is rubbish because COVID is spreading in the school and they have not done any risk assessment as to the new variant.
“If I do not attend or comply with their instruction that my daughter attends school, I face fines and legal proceedings. The fines are £2,500 for each parent. But what I find even more sinister is the threat that I could face a Family Court.
“I have had seven lawyers contact me via Twitter since I’ve posted notice of the threat. People feel very passionately about this bullying of parents trying to protect their children. I have been warned that the decision to include a potential referral to the Family Court is extraordinarily malicious. I’ve been told that these courts—which are quite secretive—can impose a range of measures from parenting orders to even initiating procedures to remove children from parents.
“I have consistently written to the head teacher at Woodfield and the board of governors trying to clarify what COVID prevention measures they have in place but have had no reply. My last on November 17 was very polite. I did criticise their claim that they would be using ‘fumigation bombs’ in classrooms. This is completely absurd, part of the hygiene theatre that is taking place. Fumigation bombs don’t work because COVID-19 is airborne, which they know and have known for a long time, and you can’t clear the air in this way.
“I send a synopsis of my daughter’s home schoolwork every day but it’s never been acknowledged. My daughter is dyslexic, but they have never given her any help, unlike my son’s secondary school, which have been great. As he is double vaccinated he attends school, and he has had a lot of support.
“This move is extremely vindicative, especially as head teachers have discretion. The Good Law Project wrote to Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi warning that threats of action over non-attendance against parents and/or children with vulnerabilities was unlawful. He said at the time that head teachers had discretion. But one month later Zahawi sent a letter to head teachers demanding they crack down on school absences, without any reference to the pandemic! The Good Law Project are now taking legal action against Solihull Council because it is bullying a parent there who won’t send their child into an unsafe school.”
Lisa relayed the case of another mother, Annette Connolly from Nottinghamshire, who was fined for keeping her eight-year-old son off school while he had COVID symptoms.
Annette, a mother of four, said on November 3 that her son was weak and had a cough, so he didn’t attend school. Days later he received a negative PCR test result, but as he was still unwell she kept him off a further day. She then received a call from Lawrence View Primary School telling her she would be fined. She has since withdrawn her son from school.
Lisa says she doesn’t know if the threats against her are also aimed at bullying her daughter off the school roll, “But I can’t help feeling that they are threatening me because I have been so vocal in speaking out against the spread of COVID in schools and the dangers.
“I was first threatened with fines and legal prosecution in September 2020 but then this stopped for a while. Now they’ve started it again and I believe they want to make an example out of someone, take someone down in order to bully and intimidate other parents.
“I’ve replied to the letter ‘requesting’ a meeting before legal proceedings commence. Again, it’s very polite but states that ‘I will not meet at Woodfield, given that it is unsafe. There is a case of COVID there now. I have yet to see the updated risk assessment in light of the latest strain of the virus, Omicron.’
“I have said I am happy to meet via Teams or Zoom and have made clear that any meetings will be recorded by myself ‘so they will be admissible in a court of law’.
“I’m not going to lie that I’m not worried. I have sleepless nights over these threats. But they have pushed me so far that I’m losing my fear. I am fully prepared to be a martyr if that is what it takes to show what is going on in schools and the dangers to which children, staff and parents are being knowingly exposed.”
The threat against Lisa comes just as disturbing information emerges on the new Omicron COVID-19 variant, first discovered in South Africa. Of particular concern is the large rise in the number of children—0-4 years of age—being hospitalised.
Despite this, no action is being taken to prevent the spread of the virus. UK government guidance stipulates only that face masks should be worn in certain public settings, including school corridors but not classrooms. This is part of a decision to deliberately allow the mass infection in children. Chief Medical Officer for England Chris Whitty has previously stated that it is “inevitable” children will be infected.
Consequently, on December 1, 18,770 children recorded positive COVID-19 tests, 38.8 percent of the total 48,374 infections that day. 113 children in the UK have been killed by the virus and 77,000 children, aged 2 to 16, currently have Long COVID.
School attendance is falling daily, with the Department for Education recording a decline from 91.5 percent of state school students in attendance to 89 percent over the fortnight to November 30. Some 208,000 pupils were not in attendance for reasons relating to COVID. This includes more than 1,000 absent because of COVID-related school closures. Staff absences are also climbing, with 2 percent of teachers and 1.9 percent of teaching assistants unable to work because they have tested positive.