For Immediate Release
Maine Coalition for Vaccine Choice
Ginger Taylor, Director
The Maine Coalition for Vaccine Choice Urges Lawmakers to Oppose LD 471
In recent years, many Americans have been opting out of one or more vaccines on the CDC recommended schedule because of unaddressed safety, legal and corruption issues in the vaccine program. Parents report that their children are being harmed by the current vaccine schedule, and that they cannot get proper medical evaluation and treatment for vaccine reactions. These claims have been backed up by reports on the US Vaccine Injury Compensation Program by American University Law, The Associated Press and the US General Accounting office. Parents report serious concerns over the liability protection that have been given to vaccine makers so that they cannot be sued when their products cause harm or death. Parents report that when they read vaccine safety research, they find that it often runs contrary to to the safety claims being made by their physicians.
Most dramatically, there are currently three vaccine scandals unfolding at the federal level. Merck is in federal court defending against claims that they falsified their efficacy data on the mumps vaccine to win FDA reapproval for the MMR, the Department of Justice has indicted a CDC vaccine safety researcher on fraud charges, and last year another CDC scientist turned whistleblower and reported to Congress that he had participating in covering up vaccine-autism links from the public, along with the head of the CDC’s Immunization Safety Office and several other CDC officials. Congressional hearings are currently being scheduled to investigate the charges.
The United States has the most aggressive vaccine program in the world, and many parents are now opting to choose less aggressive schedules, including the one that was used in the US during the 1970s and 1980s, or those used in other countries like Denmark, with a few opting out of the vaccine program entirely.
Yet rather than deal with the very serious issues that have caused parents to distrust the vaccine program, Rep. Linda Sanborn has introduced a bill to force parents to be lectured on CDC vaccine information, and file paper work with their schools that certifying that they have received vaccine counseling and are rejecting one or more shots anyway, in order to exercise their right to opt out of a vaccine and send their children to school. This measure will do nothing to raise vaccine rates, because it does nothing to address the real reasons that parents are backing away from CDC vaccine recommendations, the growing and legitimate distrust of the CDC and the safety of the vaccine program.
The Maine Coalition for Vaccine Choice thanks the members of the Maine Legislature that have opposed this measure, and urge those supporting it to look more closely at the issue. This bill will only serve to further divide parents and physicians on vaccine matters. We thank Governor LePage for committing to veto this bill out of respect for the rights of parents and for protecting our members from being further bullied in doctors offices for having reasonable objections to the current vaccine program.