California’s Vaccine Law: Opponents Moving, Home Schooling to Avoid Controversial Mandate
Nina Jensen, a Morgan Hill mother of two, is moving her family this month to Oregon. One big reason: The state still allows parents to opt out of vaccines for schoolchildren.
In San Jose, Kristen Kinne is checking out real estate in Idaho for the same reason. And an East Bay mom is considering going to an “underground network” of doctors to get a medical exemption for her 3 1/2-year-old son from a new law requiring nearly all California schoolchildren to be fully vaccinated — regardless of their parents’ personal or religious beliefs.
Senate Bill 277, which last year sparked one of the most contentious debates in the state Capitol in years, takes effect Friday. But tens of thousands of Californians still remain vehemently opposed to a mandate they consider a violation of their parental rights.
File photo: California state Sen. Richard Pan, D-Sacramento, with Leah Russin and her 21-month-old son, Leo. Pan’s bill requiring nearly all school children to be vaccinated has been signed by Gov. Jerry Brown. (Rich Pedroncelli/Associated Press archives)
The law, however, is being hailed by its proponents as a victory for public health. They say state records show it is already achieving measurable results in raising the number of vaccinated children.