Sponsor pulls pro-vaccination bill after outcry from opponents | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Sponsor pulls pro-vaccination bill after outcry from opponents

Posted By on Wed, Dec 14, 2016 at 8:19 AM

NEVER MIND: Rep. Karilyn Brown pulls vaccination measure.
  • NEVER MIND: Rep. Karilyn Brown pulls vaccination measure.
The legislature hasn't yet convened and the anti-vaccination crowd is already crowing about victory in pressuring a Sherwood legislator to pull a bill requiring mandatory vaccination of school children.

David Ramsey wrote Saturday about the proposal by Republican Rep. Karilyn Brown. It's over.

Secure Arkansas, the fringe right-wing group that is fueled by government conspiracy theories of various sorts, circulated this message:

Secure Arkansas wants to thank Representative Karilyn Brown for pulling HB 1043, the mandatory vaccination bill. The legislators have already started filing bills for the 2017 session. They began filing November 15th, 2016, before the Arkansas Session started.

Rep. Brown has stated:

“ Last week I filed HB 1043, a bill that would remove the provision for immunization exemption based on religious and philosophical beliefs.”

“I filed HB 1043 as a result of a request from a person who was sincerely concerned about the low immunization rate in Arkansas.”

“Since filing the bill, I have heard from numerous concerned citizens on both sides of this issue. I would like to say thank you to everyone who has communicated with me over the past few days.”

“HB 1043 addresses an important public health issue, but it intersects with personal freedoms that all Americans hold so dear. There appear to be valid arguments on each side of this issue.”

“I have determined that this issue is best left in the hands of public health officials working with healthcare providers and individual citizens who have an interest in and experience with this issue.

“For these reasons, I have made a decision to withdraw HB 1043 from consideration in the 2017 Regular Session. There is not a mechanism for me to withdraw this bill until the Arkansas Legislature convenes on January 9th, 2017. At that time, I will take the necessary steps to withdraw HB 1043.”

Again, the Arkansas residents sincerely thank her for withdrawing this very dangerous bill! We also want to thank everyone who has contacted Rep. Brown regarding mandatory vaccination! A special thank you goes out to the parents of all the children in Arkansas who have been harmed by vaccinations! Thank you for standing up once again!

NOTE: It appears that HB 1043 may have come from Secular Coalition For America. This group seems to want to limit personal choice — especially if it’s based on religious views or a desire for freedom from overreaching mandates. On Secular Coalition For America’s own website, it states:

“The Secular Coalition for America is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit advocacy organization dedicated to amplifying the diverse and growing voice of the nontheistic community in the United States. Our 19 voting coalition member organizations are established 501(c)(3) nonprofits who serve atheists, agnostics, humanists, freethinkers and other nontheistic Americans.”

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