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On Feb. 23rd, 2012, an assembly bill (AB 2109) was submitted to the California Legislature by state assemblyman and pediatrician, Dr. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento), which will make it harder for parents to refuse to vaccinate their children. The bill is sponsored by the California Medical Association (CMA), the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the California Immunization Coalition.
Right now in California if a child is enrolled in school their parents are legally required to have them vaccinated. However, exemptions may be obtained by parents who object for religious or philosophical reasons if they sign the portion of the immunization record that says immunizations are contrary to their beliefs and that they understand that in the case of an outbreak of a 'vaccine-preventable’ disease the child may be temporarily excluded from attending school/child care institutions "for his/her protection."
If Bill AB 2109 passes, by July 1st, 2013, parents who wish to opt out will be required to bring with them on the day of enrollment a written statement from a medical doctor or conventional "health care practitioner" that states they have been informed of the benefits and risks of vaccines and the communicable disease they are said to prevent. The parent would also be required to submit a written statement that indicates that he or she received the information from the health care practitioner.
As first reported by Dr. Tim O’ Shea in the Feb. 23rd:
This bill, if passed, would require parents to obtain the signature of a "health care practitioner" for a personal beliefs/religious exemption. MDs, nurse practitioners, and physician's assistants can sign. Naturopaths and chiropractors cannot. The signature will need to be obtained on a separate form provided by the Department of Public Health which states that the health care practitioner has provided risk and benefit information to the parent.
Thus far, there has been virtually no mainstream media coverage of Bill AB2109. This is a curious fact, considering that if it passes it will be illegal not to submit your children to a medical procedure without the explicit permission of the conventional medical system. Is this not the very antithesis of the meaning of health freedom, in a country that prides itself on its freedom-loving, Constitutionally underwritten principles? As Dr. Tim O’ Shea explains:
Let's remove the word vaccination from the whole discussion for a minute here. Let's pretend this whole issue isn't about vaccines at all, but rather about any other medical procedure. Got that picture?
OK so then tell me, what kind of political system, or medical system anywhere on earth would presume to make it a law for you to obtain permission to opt out of any medical procedure, which decisions are completely your choice in the first place? Permission not to get medicine? See what I'm getting at here?
If Dr. Tim O’ Shea’s predictions are correct and California falls, like Washington state recently did with the loss of their philosophical exemptions, the rest of the domino states are likely to follow suit in the next 2 years.
In other words, this stealthily submitted and barely noticed bill is setting a dangerous precedent and may represent the beginning of the end for philosophical and religious vaccine exemptions in the United States -- with mandatory vaccinations likely following close behind. Now that children, according to the CDC immunization guidelines, are required to have an increasingly suspect 60 vaccines by age 6 (with dozens of additional vaccines in the developmental pipeline) how can we stand by idly while their health and health rights, and those of all future generations, are being serious jeopardized and legislated away into oblivion?
Please help to spread the word about Bill AB 2109 now, before it is too late.
ASSEMBLY BILL 2109 - ab_2109_bill_20120223_introduced.pdf (PDF Document)