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Parents Testify in Colorado Senate Opposing Vaccine Bill

Posted: 4/16/2014 9:01:42 PM | with 6 comments

Parents and health care professionals filled the Old Supreme Court building in Denver at an Apr. 9, 2014 public hearing of the Colorado Senate Military and Veterans Affairs Committee to testify against a bill (HB1288) to restrict the personal belief exemption to vaccination. The bill is being sponsored by Irene Aguilar (D-District 32) and co-sponsored by Lucia Guzman (D-District 34); Nancy Todd (D-District 28); and Jessie Ulibarri (D-District 21).
Testimony for and against the bill went on for nearly five hours. Just like the Mar. 13 House hearing, parents opposing the bill outnumbered those speaking in support of the bill. Unlike the House hearing, however, the Senate hearing was not as extensively covered by the media.
Burdening Parents and Judging Personal Beliefs
Colorado resident and NVIC Executive Director Theresa Wrangham testified at the hearing that the bill is “discriminatory because it burdens those choosing to take vaccine exemptions with higher education requirements than federal law requires for those choosing to vaccinate. “ She added that “Those harmed by vaccination are as important as those harmed by a disease” and that requiring state sponsored education or a doctor’s signature to obtain a personal belief exemption puts “the state or health care provider in the position of approving another citizen’s religious or conscientiously held beliefs.”  
Threatening Medical Privacy and Singling Out Parents for Harassment
NVIC Advocacy Director, Dawn Richardson, submitted written testimony on behalf of NVIC and said the bill “threatens the medical privacy of children and sets them up for harassment by requiring their individual school or daycare to publicly release vaccine exemptions rates upon request.” She pointed out that the small number of parents taking exemptions will make it likely the family will be “singled out, harassed and be discriminated against” and said that this is already happening in California where a similar bill restricting personal belief exemption was passed.
Parents Testifying About Vaccines Injuries and Health Choices
Parents testified that they followed doctors’ orders without questioning and their children suffered vaccine reactions and were left with permanent brain and immune system problems. Ronnie Prine brought his severely vaccine injured adult son to the Capitol in a wheelchair and Kathy Sincere testified that she has four adult vaccine injured children.  Robyn Charron, who has a four year old vaccine injured son and wants to protect her two year old daughter from becoming vaccine injured, expressed the concerns of many parents testifying in opposition to the bill. She said, “This moves us toward vaccinations for everyone and eliminating exemptions altogether.”
Health care professionals also testified against the bill, including a doctor of chiropractic with four children. She said, “I Iive in a different paradigm for my family when it comes to their health care.”
Watch a report on the hearing by KDVR-TV.
Listen to the April 9 hearing in the Senate Military and Veterans Affairs Committee. (Starts at 02:50)
Colorado residents still have time to contact their elected state representatives and senators and express their concerns about HB1288.  Sign up for the free online NVIC Advocacy Portal and stay informed.

Posted: 4/16/2014 9:01:42 PM | with 6 comments


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