President Bush Should Remove Mercury from Vaccines

"Protecting the health and informed consent rights of children since 1982."


for release June 6, 2005


Two national parent organizations are calling on President Bush to issue an Executive Order to compel drug companies to remove mercury preservatives from vaccines in order to protect developing fetuses, infants and children from potential immune and brain system damage. Unlocking Autism (UA), a national, non-profit autism awareness organization, and the non-profit National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), the largest and oldest vaccine safety organization in the U.S., are asking the President to enforce a 1999 directive to drug companies by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to remove mercury from all vaccines.

Mercury is a known neurotoxin and drug companies removed mercury preservatives from over-the-counter products in the early 1990’s but the FDA has not enforced its 1999 directive regarding vaccines. While mercury has been reduced in many childhood vaccines, some flu vaccines given to pregnant women and infants still contain so much mercury that a person would have to weigh 500 pounds to safely get a flu vaccination according to EPA standards.

During the fall Presidential campaign, Unlocking Autism asked both Presidential candidates if they supported removal of mercury from all childhood vaccines. President Bush said “yes” in writing but since the election has refused to take action despite repeated requests from parents.

“The drug companies have had six years to stop injecting mercury into our children’s bodies and that is long enough. Giving mercury to kids on purpose is stupid. If the FDA won’t make them get it out then nobody but the President can make them do it. We need the President to step up to the plate and protect our children and the unborn from harm.” said Shelley Reynolds, Unlocking Autism (UA) President.

Barbara Loe Fisher, President of the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), said “The precautionary principle should prevail here: when in doubt, get it out. Whenever there is a safer product available, the more risky product should be removed from the market. This is like déjà vu for those of us who watched the FDA fail to properly regulate the drug industry after the less reactive DTaP vaccine was licensed for babies in 1996. The FDA refused to recall the more toxic DPT vaccine and so it was injected into American babies for six more years, just like mercury has been injected into babies for six more years after the FDA told the drug companies to get it out of vaccines.”

Unlocking Autism, the National Vaccine Information Center and other parent groups, who are concerned that the dramatic rise in autism and other neurodevelopmental delays in children in the past few decades is in part due to the use of multiple mercury-containing vaccines, are making ads and public service announcements available to parents in every state which ask President Bush to issue an Executive Order to get mercury out of vaccines. State and federal legislators are also being made aware of the request.

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