California SB277, which would eliminate the personal belief exemption for public school children in California, is currently working its way through the state legislature (discussed in a previous post). This week following a very heated public comment period, SB277 passed the Health Committee. On Wednesday April 15th the bill will be discussed in the Education Committee. Please join me in contacting your legislators and the members of the Education Committee to voice your support of the bill. The group Vaccinate California has made it very easy to contact your representative. You can also sign up for their web alerts to keep up to date about the progress of the bill.
Below are the phone numbers of all Education Committee members, please take the time to call and ask for their support. The anti-vaccination side has been quite vocal, so we need to let our legislators know that a clear majority of Californians know that vaccines are safe and effective and support this bill.
Sen. Bob Huff (916) 651-4029
Sen. Connie Leyva (916) 651-4020
Sen. Carol Liu (916) 651-4025
Sen. Marty Block (916) 651-4039
Sen. Loni Hancock (916) 651-4009
Sen. Tony Mendoza (916) 651-4032
Sen. Andy Vidak (916) 651-4014
Sen. Richard Pan (916) 651-4006 (SB277’s sponsor–you can call to thank his office)
A sample call or email script (including an example of my personalized response in bold):
Dear State Senator/Representative ____,
I am writing/calling to encourage you to support the bill introduced by Senators Pan and Allen that would eliminate the personal belief exemption for vaccination in public school children. The science is clear, vaccines are safe and prevent millions of deaths a year. The efficacy of vaccination rests on herd immunity and California vaccination rates are dangerously low. This has led to recent outbreaks in whooping cough and the measles, which are incredibly dangerous diseases, especially to babies too young to be vaccinated and people with compromised immune systems. Controlling these diseases is also costly to the state and strains our public health resources. [if desired you can add something personalized here like: As a scientist and soon to be mother, this is a very important issue to me. When my baby is born in May, I am worried she will be needlessly exposed to dangerous diseases due to the high concentration of people who have chosen not to vaccinate in the Bay Area. I have a PhD in Biomedical Sciences and am trained to read and understand medical literature. I can assure you that the research supporting the safety of vaccines is sound. I would be happy to discuss this further with your office, provide you with easy to understand information about how vaccines work and the evidence that they are safe, or provide any other assistance you may need in making your decision.] Please help prevent needless outbreaks and deaths by supporting this bill and eliminating the personal belief exemption for vaccination in public school children.
Thank you for your consideration of this issue,