This Month's Top Commentators

  • Be the first to comment.

The Best Voter Lists Available

PunditHouse Store

Senator Tarte Seeks Mandatory Inoculations, Removal of Religious Exemption

|

When politicians start publicly asking random questions about policy, you can bet that something is stewing in their minds. Sometimes this is a good thing.  An overabundance of negative feedback can quickly snuff out a bad idea before it starts.  Unfortunately this was not the case with North Mecklenburg’s Republican Senator Jeff Tarte.  

On February 28, he posted the following question to his Facebook page:

tartevaccines

Yesterday we learned what this was the precursor to. Despite very mixed reactions to his initial probing, Senator Tarte has filed Senate Bill 346,

“AN ACT ADDRESSING PUBLIC HEALTH POLICY FOR THE HEALTH, SAFETY, AND WELL‑BEING OF OUR CHILDREN BY REVISING IMMUNIZATION REQUIREMENTS FOR SCHOOL ATTENDANCE TO MAKE THESE REQUIREMENTS MORE CONSISTENT WITH THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION, ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON IMMUNIZATION PRACTICES; TO REQUIRE ALL STUDENTS TO BE SCREENED FOR SEVERE COMBINED IMMUNODEFICIENCY PRIOR TO IMMUNIZATION; TO AMEND THE MEDICAL EXEMPTION FOR REQUIRED IMMUNIZATIONS; AND TO REPEAL THE RELIGIOUS EXEMPTION FOR REQUIRED IMMUNIZATIONS.”

Did you catch that last part folks?

Allow me to restate.

“To repeal the religious exemption for required immunizations”.

Frightened yet?

In Senator Tarte’s email newsletter, he posted the following about his new bill.

This week, Senator Tarte along with Senators Tamara Barringer (District 17) and Terry Van Duyn (District 49), filed a bill regarding North Carolina’s required immunizations. It is interesting to note Senator Van Duyn is the mother of an autistic child. The bill reinforces current North Carolina law that requires that all children from birth through age 18 who will be attending school must receive vaccinations. This requirement, however, will not include children who are home schooled. North Carolina would now follow the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommended panel of vaccinations. This bill adopts best practices, an age appropriate schedule, and exempts the HPV vaccine. ACIP’s list of recommended vaccines is endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Academy of Family Physicians, and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Moving forward there would no longer be religious exemptions and/or personal exemptions, which are currently not allowed. Only medical exemptions will be accepted if authorized by a physician.

He strongly encourages all constituents to read Senate Bill 346 (found here). He recognizes the importance of individual rights and religious freedoms, but it is imperative that we protect the health and safety of every child. The increase in people not vaccinating their children puts selected areas of our state at risk of losing the protection from life-threatening diseases afforded through herd immunity. It is important that North Carolina maintains appropriate immunity levels to ensure we protect all citizens from suffering from these dangerous diseases. The immunizations bill has bipartisan support. Senator Tarte believes that this will truly be the best way to protect the health and safety of all of our children.

Perhaps the biggest mistake he makes in this description of the bill is that it “will not include children who are home schooled”.

This is not accurate.

Section 1(A) of the bill clearly states:

However, in order to attend school in this State (K‑12), each student shall be immunized in accordance with this section.”

It does not specify “public school”, only K-12.  This applies to public, private, and home schooled students. According to law, home schools are considered “non public schools” and have the same requirements as other institutions of k-12 education.  They are not in and of themselves exempt from the vaccine requirements.

Part 3: Home Schools

§ 115C-563. Definitions.

As used in this Part or Parts 1 (Private Church Schools and Schools of Religious Charter) and 2 (Qualified Nonpublic Schools) of this Article:
(a) “Home school” means a nonpublic school consisting of the children of not more than two families or households, where the parents or legal guardians or members of either household determine the scope and sequence of academic instruction, provide academic instruction, and determine additional sources of academic instruction.

§ 115C-564. Qualifications and requirements.
A home school shall make the election to operate under the qualifications of either Part 1 or Part 2 of this Article and shall meet the requirements of the Part elected, except that any requirement related to safety and sanitation inspections shall be waived if the school operates in a private residence and except that testing requirements in G.S. 115C-549 and G.S. 115C-557 shall be on an annual basis. The persons providing academic instruction in a home school shall hold at least a high school diploma or its equivalent. (1987 (Reg. Sess., 1988), c. 891, s. 1.)

§ 115C-565.  Requirements exclusive.

No school which complies with this Part shall be subject to any other provision of law relating to education except requirements of law respecting immunization.”

Homeschoolers are only exempt NOW from vaccinations if they take the religious exemption, which this bill eliminates.

In all honesty, it should not require a religious exemption at all.  People should be free to make their own determinations on matters such as what to have injected into themselves and their offspring.  

However well meaning a piece of legislation is, government should not ever force people against their will to undergo medical treatment.  Something so inherently personal is no business of bureaucrats to decide.

This “public good” mentality is exactly what led to the eugenics movement in North Carolina from the late 1920’s to early 1970’s.

While I’m not equating vaccination to sterilization, “public good” is clearly a subjective and ever evolving mentality.

I have seen no compelling evidence to suggest that lack of immunization by people who so choose has created any widespread negative health consequences that necessitate such action by the government.

Senator Tarte, whose wife is a pediatrician and who himself previously worked in the medical industry, has a clear bias regarding vaccination.  Now they seek to push their opinions onto everyone else.

How very “conservative”.

Donate Now!We need your help! If you like PunditHouse, please consider donating to us. Even $5 a month can make a difference!

Short URL: https://pundithouse.com/?p=18404

Comments are closed