March 10th, 2015
State Capitol, Room 4085
Sacramento, CA 95814
RE: OPPOSE proposed legislation SB 277 by Senators Pan and Allen to eliminate all parental rights regarding childhood vaccinations.
Dear Senator Hall,
I am contacting you to express my concerns regarding the Senate Bill 277 that aims to remove a parent’s right to informed consent. I believe that the choice of if, when and how a child is to be vaccinated needs to remain between a family and their doctor. Where there is a risk of injury or death, no matter how small the perceived risk may be, there must be a choice. To mandate a medical procedure with known risks is medically unethical. I implore you to consider these critical reasons to oppose or dismiss SB277:
The mandate violates a parent’s right to informed consent: Vaccines are chemically synthesized biopharmaceuticals with known and documented side effects that include permanent injury and death. Forcing a medical procedure on a non-consenting individual that carries the risk of injury or death, no matter how small that chance may be, is medically unethical according to the American Medical Association's code of ethics, is inhumane and is a violation of our basic human right to posses autonomy over one's own body.
US ranks last for infant mortality, yet first for immunizations: Compared with other industrialized nations, the US administers the most pediatric vaccinations yet ranks the worst - 34th - for infant mortality rate.1
Even more vaccines will be added to the schedule: As you may well know, there is a clause in the bill that leaves the door open to add as many new vaccines to the pediatric schedule as the California Department of Health sees fit. There are currently 300 vaccines in development.2
No education options for non-complying families: This bill affects all school-aged children registered either in public or private schools, home schools, as well as daycare and preschool facilities. The passing of SB277 combined with California’s compulsory education laws leave parents with religious beliefs against or conscientious concerns about vaccinations no option other than truancy. Families with truant children will thereby face court-determined penalties such as fines, Child Protection Services involvement, or even jail time.
Pharmaceutical companies have no-liability with vaccine reactions: The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 established the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) as a federal no-fault system to compensate persons (or families of persons) who are injured by childhood vaccines, has paid out over $2.8 billion to families whose children have died or suffered other adverse reactions. In the past 5 years, an average of $221,000,000 has been paid out per year, which has nearly doubled from years before.3 It is worth noting that recipients of compensation are not allowed to speak of their case after its been settled.
Big Pharma’s fraudulent behavior: In just the past 5 years, drug makers have paid the U.S. Government $19.2 billion in criminal and civil fraud penalties. Skepticism of the pharmaceutical industry is well deserved, and it doesn’t imply skepticism of science. Furthermore, two former Merck virologists now whistleblowers have filed a lawsuit against Merck alleging that Merck falsified data with the MMR II vaccine in order to meet the required 95% efficacy rate.4 This suggests the possibility that vaccine failure, not only the unvaccinated, is key factor causing the annual outbreaks.
Adverse reactions are more common than widely perceived: Managed by the CDC and FDA, the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) reports more than 30,000 vaccine related injuries annually. In 2015 alone, $94,982,000.93 has already been awarded to 217 claimants.5
As of December 14, 2014 there have been 6,962 serious adverse events reported to VAERS in connection with the measles vaccine since 1990. Over half of those occurring in children three years old and under. Of these events 329 were deaths, with over half of the deaths occurring in children under three years of age.6 It is estimated that only 10% of adverse reactions are filed with VAERS as this form of passive surveillance is greatly limited by underreporting.7
In conclusion, when government makes decisions to take away parental rights relative to the health of their children it must only do so when all can agree it is in the best interests of every single child. Opinion 8.08 of the American Medical Association (AMA) states, “The physician has an ethical obligation to help the patient make choices from among the therapeutic alternatives consistent with good medical practice. Informed consent is a basic policy both in ethics and law that physicians must honor...”
This proposed legislation ignores and eliminates the fundamental American value of choice as well as a doctor’s ethical obligation to provide their patients informed consent. If we are not free to make informed, voluntary decisions about which pharmaceutical products we are willing to take, then we are not free in any sense of the word. If this bill passes it will set a very dangerous precedent and there will be no limit on which individual freedoms the State can remove in the name of the greater good.
For these reasons and many more, I urge you to view this bill as inhumane and medically unethical.
Please OPPOSE SB277.
SAMPLE LETTER #2
Therefore, there are other talking points we can use to mobilize our cause (see attached file for citations).
These include: 1) The exploding vaccine schedule which hasn’t been tested by the CDC
The vaccine schedule has more than doubled since 2000. Today, children are given “69 doses of vaccines for 16 different viral and bacterial illnesses ” compared to “34 doses of 11 different vaccines ”
There have been no short term or long-term studies by the CDC to determine the safety or efficacy of the current vaccine schedule.
2) SB 277 requires forced vaccination for anything the state deems acceptable
The Tetanus vaccination is mandated in SB 277. Tetanus is a non-communicable disease.
There are 300 vaccines in development. If this bill passes, there is nothing to stop the government from requiring all of them.
3) Vaccine manufacturers have no liability.
The Supreme Court ruled that vaccines are “unavoidably unsafe products” and thus released manufacturers and administrators from all liability .
If there is forced vaccination, manufacturers have no fiscal incentive to ensure that they are creating the safest product possible.
4) The science on vaccines is NOT settled, contrary to what the media likes to tell us.
The federal National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program has paid over $3 billion dollars to vaccine injured families since 1989 .
SAMPLE LETTER #3
Re: Oppose SB 277 – Bill to Repeal Personal Belief Exemption for Immunizations.
As a woman and a mother, I find this bill to be a direct threat of physical assault against me and my family. I have a right to choose to have an abortion, yet Senator Pan thinks I’m too stupid and ignorant to make personal, private medical choices for my own children -- this is insulting, outrageous and an extremely dangerous precedent to set. (Senator Pan seems to have forgotten entirely his statement in 2012 that he was not seeking to remove parental informed medical consent/choice. Is he ignorant that his statement was recorded on a video camera and can be found all over the internet?)
The 150 or so cases of measles, which isn’t a life-threatening infection, is fewer than the annual number of people who die of bee stings, spider bites, etc. It doesn't even compare to the yearly number of people killed in car accidents – should we be proposing a bill to outlaw cars? This bill makes no sense and only serves to stir up controversy and undue hysteria.
People’s bodies, genetics, medical histories, etc. are very diverse and medical decisions like this are best left up to parents and doctors in private consultation, just as it’s always been done. Why “fix” what isn’t broken? Don’t you think most parents know how to make the right medical choice for their own children?
I'm highly concerned that if Senator Pan is successful and gets this bill rammed through, next year he will introduce a forced vaccine bill for all adults, then after that what comes next? Forced sterilizations? Will we be forced to become subjects for pharmaceutical human experiments? Once people are stripped of their right to personal medical consent and choice there is no limit to the abuses and horrors that will follow.
I will never allow this to happen to my family. I do not consent and I will NOT comply.
I strongly urge you to oppose SB 277.
SAMPLE LETTER #4
"As a single parent I have great concerns regarding SB277. Not only does this bill remove the rights of parents to decide which, if any, vaccines their child receives, it negates the option of delayed vaccination chosen by each parent to fit the medical needs of their individual children. There is currently far too much conflicting evidence in the medical community regarding the safety of vaccines to impose such a mandate. Even the Supreme Court in May of 2011 ruled vaccines to be "unavoidably unsafe". SB277 would make it nearly impossible to school one's child in the state of California without fully vaccinating. While the newly added extremely restrictive amendment now exempts those schooling via Private School Affidavits, there are many families who currently utilize the public charter school option for this purpose. Many of those families, especially one parent households, would be forced to apply for public assistance in order to provide for their families while home schooling their children via a PSA, or leave California. The California constitution states that a free public education is a right of all children, therefor denying a child an education based on vaccination status is discriminatory and unconstitutional. In addition SB277 does not allow religious exemptions for those who oppose vaccination based on their religious beliefs. SB277 will have catastrophic financial implications for many families and for California schools. Will unvaccinated children in public schools (including home school charters) be required to receive ALL doses of the mandated vaccines immediately in order to attend? If not, would they be considered truant until current and who would be responsible for monitoring this? If a parent of an unvaccinated child is financially unable to home school will CPS remove these children from their families and forcibly vaccinate them, place them in foster homes, and/or fine and jail parents? Public schools stand to lose millions of dollars when thousands of children are no longer able to attend public schools due to vaccination status. Regarding protecting immunocompromised individuals and those too young to be vaccinated it is important to note that herd immunity does not apply to vaccines. Herd immunity only applies when a disease is obtained naturally, therefor conferring lifetime immunity while passing temporary immunity on to infants in order to protect them when they are most vulnerable. Vaccines do not confer lifetime immunity, nor do they allow immunity to be transferred to newborns. As your constituent I urge you to vote NO on SB277 and protect our right as parents to make informed medical decisions for our children as well as allow them the right to the public education they are entitled to. When there is a risk, as with vaccines, there must also be a choice."