Last year Sen. Yen introduced a bill to eliminate vaccine exemptions (SB83) for Oklahoma children. It failed. He does not give up. He refiled his failed bill under a new name, SB1123, with the exact same original language as the original bill. This new bill goes before the Health and Human Services (HHS) committee on MONDAY, Feb 12th.
Yen also put forward a joint resolution the would eliminate all but limited medical exemptions to vaccinations for school on the next general election ballot. Sen. Yen's hope is that if he can get this to the unaware and trusting general public he might have a chance of getting it passed.
If it passes the committee on Monday, this bill would then go to the Senate floor, a house committee and finally the House Floor. If it passed ALL of that, it would go to the Governor’s desk.
Why Oppose This Legislation:
Oklahoma's exemption rates are already low. According to the Oklahoma State Department of Health Kindergarten Immunization Survey for 2016-2017 the expedition rate is only 1.7%.
"Exemption Rates" and "Vaccination Rates" require context and understanding. It's a mistake to use the term "exempt" and "unvaccinated" interchangeably. 1.7% simply means the child didn't receive 42 out of 42 doses required for entrance in to school. Even opting out of one vaccine, such as chicken pox, puts you in the "exempt" category.
Medical exemptions are difficult to obtain. SB1123 would abolish personal and religious exemptions that Oklahoma has held dear for decades. Medical exemptions only account for .2% of all exemptions. They are the least used and hardest to obtain.
The immunocompromised won't benefit. Without including the vaccination and exception rates of teachers, administrators, and any other adults in the school setting, how can this data possibly be used by parents of a child with immune challenges? Additionally, there are currently no vaccines available for the vast majority of infectious diseases in our communities.
Parents need to trust, not distrust the system. Vaccine makers have had no liability for injuries or death due to vaccines sine 1986. Under the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA) NO manufacturer of vaccines can be held liable, therefore we ask, "Who will be responsible?"
What about outbreaks? In a recent Oklahoma mumps outbreak, many of the affected were vaccinated. See report at tinyurl.com/okmumpsreport.
Why do parents opt out? The vaccine schedule has increased so dramatically since the signing of the NCVIA in 1986 and some parents are not comfortable with so many, so young. Additionally, Children with a family history of allergic reactions and autoimmune disease are at a higher risk for adverse reactions. However, these do not qualify a child for a medical exemption. There are currently no screening tests given to patients prior to receiving vaccinations to ensure they do not suffer any of the known detrimental side effects.
Parents may utilize a religious exemption because they object to the use of aborted fetal cells in the manufacturing of some vaccines, object to the mixing of blood products, object to the use of pork products in the manufacturing of some vaccines, or have a deeply held belief that their body is a temple made in the image of God.
Where there is risk, there must be choice. According to the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS), there have been over 100 deaths from the MMR vaccine. Over 8,000 vaccine adverse events have been reported in Oklahoma alone and the CDC openly admits that less than 10% of vaccine injuries and adverse events are even reported to VAERS. This openly debunks Senator Yen's "One in a million" injury claim.
Let’s kill this legislation now! Call and email all on this committee below and if they are YOUR Senator, type "FROM YOUR CONSTITUENT, Vote NO on SB1123" into the subject line.