Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Private School Parents Decline Vaccination

The vaccine police are alarmed by the fact that in California, parents who put their children in private schools are more likely to refuse vaccination for their children than those who send their kids to public school. The opt-out rate from vaccination requirements at some private schools is about 80%. Private school parents question whether many of today’s newer vaccines are beneficial for their children. Some parents are concerned about whether the vaccine system is overwhelmed by giving many vaccines to children at the same time. The number of students at private schools who are declining vaccination seems to be increasing.

In the libertarian tradition, California has a philosophical exemption from vaccine requirements that allows parents to decline vaccines for their children for any reason, or no reason. Twenty states have this broad philosophical exemption to vaccination, while the other states require a family to present a religious or medical exemption in order to decline vaccination.

Nationwide, an increasing number of parents have been questioning the value or safety of certain vaccines for their children, and more have been opting out of vaccine requirements. But in California, the vaccine police have gone on the counteroffensive, demanding that limits be placed on the philosophical exemption for opting out of vaccination.

California Democratic Assemblyman Richard Pan, himself a pediatrician, sponsored a new bill to require that parents consult with pediatricians or a school nurse before being able to opt out of vaccination. The liberal California legislature then passed this law, despite pretending to be in favor of individual liberty. No one should be surprised if Governor Jerry Brown signs this costly, burdensome intrusion on personal rights into law.

The State of California is on the verge of economic collapse. Don’t its politicians have bigger issues than interfering with parental decisions about their own children?

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