Dear Washington NVIC Advocacy Team Members,
As you probably know by now, ESB5005 passed the House floor on Friday, March 25th with a final vote of 66 to 29. It had already passed through the Senate in February. We are very grateful to Representative Hinkle for offering our notarization model amendment which attempted to remove the vaccine provider education and signature requirement. This unfortunately did not pass. We are also grateful to all the representatives who passionately debated against this bill.
To watch the debate link here and scroll in 10 minutes and 15 seconds:
To see how your own state representative ultimately voted, link to: http://flooractivityext.leg.wa.gov/rollcall.aspx?id=35825&bienId=21.
The House and Senate do not yet have a Conference Committee meeting scheduled to come to final concurrence about the wording of the bill they will present to the Governor. Both versions are posted here: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?bill=5005.
Once the House and the Senate do reach concurrence on the wording of the bill, it will be passed to the Governor for her signature or veto. If she receives the final version of the bill on or before April 18th, she will have five days to sign or veto the bill so we need to act quickly.
Some people from our group met with the Governor’s policy advisor last week. We discussed the problems with ESB5005 and asked the Governor to veto the bill. The discussion went well. We are hopeful that if we can show enough opposition against this bill that we may have a chance to get the Governor to veto ESB5005!
Here is what you can do:
1) Contact Governor Gregoire and ask her to VETO ESB5005
Send an email: http://www.governor.wa.gov/contact/default.asp
Mailing Address: Governor Christine Gregoire, Office of the Governor, PO Box 40002, Olympia, WA 98504-0002
If you previously wrote a letter to any legislators opposing the bill, just pull that up and readdress it with the request that the governor veto the bill.
Your phone call or voice mail message or could go as easy as this:
Hello. My name is [your name] and I am calling from [your town/city], Washington. I am calling to ask Governor Gregoire to veto ESB5005. I am a parent who believes in informed consent for medical procedures and in parental rights for the citizens of the State of Washington. Please veto ESB 5005.
If you don’t have a previous letter written and you have time, you can further educate the Governor by picking some of these points to share:
· NO OTHER STATE in the entire country burdens a parent financially and emotionally by requiring them to have to visit a doctor and obtain a signature for verification of their religious or philosophical exemption form. This bill is unconstitutional.
· Instead, other states (like Texas) add the requirement of a notarization on an exemption form with a statement that the parent has educated themselves on the risks and benefits of vaccines.
· The proponents who gave testimony in the Senate and House Committee hearings on this bill, misquoted facts and statistics to better justify their position. If the Governor were to look at the actual figures and statistics from the Washington DOH website regarding the percent of exemptions on the vaccines THAT ARE MANDATED IN WASHINGTON, instead of the figures for all vaccines on the CDC recommended list, she would see the difference between the actual numbers of exemptions in our state and those numbers testified to by proponents of this bill.
· You are already well educated on the subject of vaccine risks and benefits.
· You use medical practitioners not on the list of those eligible to sign forms.
· Many doctors are openly hostile to families making educated vaccine choices and aren’t likely to sign the form or flat out throw families out of their practice if they don’t fully vaccinate. Many pediatricians refuse to see patients if they refuse vaccines or ask for a modified vaccine schedule.
· Parents should not have to be reliant on the pharmaceutical/vaccine paradigm of healthcare in order to direct the upbringing of their children.
· Share any other personal reasons why this is important to your family.
2) Inform your own Washington State Representative and Senator that you have asked the Governor to Veto ESB5005 and request that they do the same. You can log on to your Washington state page on http://NVICAdvocacy.org to view this alert and can be directly view to your personal state legislators and their contact information.
3) Please forward this information to everyone you know who cares about this issue, and please sign up for the NVIC Advocacy Portal at http://NVICAdvocacy.org so you can receive further updates. You can also post this link to your facebook directly for a copy of this alert to share: http://nvicadvocacy.org/members/Resources/WAStopSB5005.aspx
Sincerely Your NVIC Advocacy Washington State Team Directors,
Janelle Hall and Janine Parque