BILLS HAPPENING NOW
School Entry Immunization: Concerning the modernization of the school entry immunization process.
Bill page: https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb20-163
Assigned committee: Health & Human Services
First hearing date: Feb 19, 2020, upon adjournment.
Listen to HHS: https://leg.colorado.gov/committee/granicus/1783621
Hearing location: The hearing room has been changed to Room 357 on the 3rd floor. If you plan on testifying in opposition to this bill you can sign up beginning at 8:30 am in the rotunda on the 3rd floor. The capitol building opens to the public at 7:30 am. There will be overflow rooms available on the 3rd floor and in the Old Supreme Court Room on the 2nd floor.
This is the information that we have as of 2/18/2020. If you would like to receive text alerts on any last-minute updates or instructions, text 163 to 302-440-2422
There are 5 locations available for remote testimony
- Colorado Mesa University – Grand Junction; UC-Meyer Ballroom 235 East in the building behind the parking garage
- Colorado Mesa University – Montrose; Room 100 of the Buell Higher Education Center located in the Montrose Regional Library. Free parking is located in the library parking lot and on city streets bordering the campus.
- Colorado Mtn College – Vail
- Colorado Mtn College – Glenwood Springs
- Otero Jr. College – La Junta, Colorado
Recommending people arrive around 9:30 at remote locations.
There is still time to register for one of those locations. https://leg.colorado.gov/remote-testimony
Rhonda Fields (D)
Joann Ginal (D)
Faith Winter (D)
Jim Smallwood (R)
Larry Crowder (R )
Rep. Mullica, Sen. Priola, and Sen. Gonzales have introduced SB 163, a bill that drastically threatens vaccine exemptions and medical privacy. SB163 is punitive bill that will do nothing to reduce vaccine exemptions.
Vaccine Education and Data Tracking.
SB163 is a copycat bill of HB 1288 from 2014. HB1288 aimed for an education module, doctors approving religious and personal belief exemptions, and aggregate exemption data from schools. Only the aggregate data or number of school exemptions (no Personally Identifying Information or PII) became law. The data tracking used as a coercion tool is really the main goal of these bills. “Education” is just a smokescreen to promote the bill in a palatable way, as demonstrated by the eager compromise to amend out the education module in HB1288. And there were not any practicing doctors present to testify in support of a requirement to force risk-aware parents annually into their offices for confrontation.
Attack on Religious and Personal Beliefs
In HB1288, parents convinced legislators that doctors have no jurisdiction or authority to approve religious or personal belief exemptions. SB163 attempts to negate these longstanding rights, and create “non-medical exemptions” that would fall under the approval (most likely disapproval) of doctors. CDPHE adopted the term “non-medical exemption” in 2016, which does not align with exemption statute in place since 1978. This is a tactic to delegitimize religious exemptions and personal belief exemptions. It is political suicide to revoke or attack religious beliefs. The bill intends to change the name of exemptions to “non-medical,” and then a subsequent bill would revoke two long-standing rights to exempt, without the backlash of attacking people of faith or deeply held personal convictions. We need leaders of faith communities to testify against this bill.
Stealth Data, Tracking, Registry
The real goal of SB163 is data & tracking. The “certificate” is just a Trojan Horse for “state form” that CDPHE has aggressively attempted to promulgate in rules since 2016 with significant pushback as requiring a change in statute. Any form with PII will populate CIIS, a state registry. The coercive CIIS registry targets people like criminals with reminders, recalls, home visits. The registry is “opt-out,” without a true opt-out. Both education options in SB163 generate a certificate with “demographic” information to populate CIIS tracking which includes PII: name, date of birth, address, phone number, school. Protect two pieces of critical identity information: date of birth and social security number.
Current Medical Exemption
Current Colorado statute requires a doctor to write a medical letter of contraindication for the parent to submit to school. Current law does NOT require a state medical exemption form (already created without legislative authorization) for submission to the state registry (CIIS). Doctors who submit valid medical exemptions on a form to the state will face professional scrutiny from the state medical board and undue pressure to meet the 95% vaccine target by disregarding patients who are contraindicated and at risk of adverse reaction.
Yes, SB163 applies to all citizens of Colorado. Exemption law is at the state level, not district or local school or umbrella program. If you think the bill implies you are not affected, CDPHE would likely follow this bill with a rule requiring all homeschoolers to submit their certificates to local school districts as a condition for schools to get homeschool supplemental funding. SB163 could also expand to college-aged students in the future.
Lack of Stakeholder Process
Colorado Stakeholder Process requires that people who stand to be adversely affected by public policy have a right to prior public input for consideration. Neither NVIC nor CHCA, who are recognized stakeholders, were invited to a stakeholder meeting prior to the introduction of this bill.
Immunization Education Module
You can view the module lacking vaccine risk at CDPHE website: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/immunization-education
Other over-reaching concerns of SB 163 more detrimental that an education module
1. The section of the Board of Health adopting ACIP recommendations would make every vaccine (and future vaccines) required, including vaccines that Colorado stakeholder process has voted to not make required, at a huge cost to the state budget.
2. The section creating a 95% “vaccine-protected” standard for every school is a school-shaming tactic that would negatively affect school accreditation and funding for many schools who do not meet this standard. Facts show that schools with 100% vaccine uptake have outbreaks.
3. The section requiring providers to submit all immunization and exemption data to CIIS would eliminate ALL privacy for all people, including adults, on their vaccine choices. For example, the local pharmacy would report an influenza vaccine refusal.