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West Virginia

May 9, 2007

House Bill 2835: Compulsory Human Papillomavirus Immunization

Sponsor:
Brown, Fleishauer, Longstreth, Staggers, Mahan, Guthrie, Hatfield, Marshall, and Hrutkay.

Summary:
This bill adds the human papillomavirus to the list of mandatory immunizations. Parents who refuse to permit their children to be given this immunization without being able to provide a certificate from a physician showing sufficient reason why it should not be done will be guilty of a misdemeanor. This would apply to homeschoolers in the same way it would apply to everyone else.

HSLDA will continue to oppose this bill as long as it ignores the rights of the parent to make the final determination with regard to the health of their children. If this bill is amended to allow parents to refuse this immunization for religious or conscientious reasons, we will reconsider our position.

Status:

2/5/2007(House) Introduced in House
2/5/2007(House) Sent To House Health and Human Resources Committee
4/15/2007West Virginia legislative session ends with bill failing to pass; the bill is now dead.

HSLDA's Position:
Oppose!

Action Requested:
No further action is required, as the bill is dead.

Background:
Forty-eight states provide for religious or conscientious/philosophical exemptions for parents who choose not to immunize their children. Seventeen states allow for conscientious parental choice exemptions: Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Utah, Vermont, Washington and Wisconsin. Only Mississippi and West Virginia have no religious or philosophical exemptions. However, Mississippi does allow an automatic exemption for homeschool students. According to surveys conducted by Centers for Disease Control, states allowing for conscientious choice exemptions do not have higher rates of vaccine preventable illnesses.

For more information on immunizations and parental rights, please see our issue analysis page, “Immunizations: A Parentís Choice.”.

 Other Resources

February-13-2007—West Virginia—Calls Needed to Halt Government Encroachment on Parental Rights

Bill Text