Outspoken John Larter suspended by Paramedicine Council of NSW

Tumut paramedic and deputy mayor of Snowy Valleys Council John Larter has been outspoken against the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare workers. Picture: Supplied
Tumut paramedic and deputy mayor of Snowy Valleys Council John Larter has been outspoken against the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare workers. Picture: Supplied

Paramedic John Larter, who has been a vocal critic of the state government's COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare workers, says he has been suspended from duty over his stance.

Mr Larter, who is also the deputy mayor of Snowy Valleys Council, said he was notified via email on Monday that his registration was being suspended "immediately" by the Paramedicine Council of NSW after 25 years as a paramedic.

"We're not even telling you what the reasons are, we might tell you in a month; that's what it said," he said of the email.

"Wouldn't you just ring somebody up? Wouldn't you give some reasons, even if they're just basic ones?"

The paramedic is currently taking action against the state government in the Supreme Court in response to its COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare workers.

The mandate requires all healthcare staff to have their first dose of the vaccine by September 30 and to be fully vaccinated by November 30 in order to maintain their employment.

His case went before the Supreme Court last Friday - the same day he was summoned before the Paramedicine Council.

Mr Larter is seeking declaratory relief from the Public Health Order, hoping to continue working unvaccinated after September 30 as long as he wears appropriate personal protective equipment.

Mr Larter said he has no intention of getting the COVID vaccine himself and is vehemently against the mandate, which he calls "medical apartheid".

"We're almost at breaking point every day of the week," Mr Larter previously said of the regional healthcare workforce.

"When there is an influx of work we essentially can't cope with it. That's not going to improve by taking staff off the front line."

Mr Larter said the suspension hasn't changed his vaccine stance. He maintains that he has "encouraged the vaccine" for others, but his concern is around personal choice.

If anything, the suspension has only spurred Mr Larter on with his court action, which he says is "full steam ahead".

"All they've done is really embolden me and emboldened everyone who's supporting me," he said.

Mr Larter has called for a royal commission into the matter, describing the situation an "absolute disgrace".

"No wonder these nurses, doctors, other health professionals, police and everyone else won't speak out; look what happens, you get suspended," he said.

The Paramedicine Council of NSW has been contacted.