Target: Eric Hoskins, Ontario Minister of Health
Goal: Support bill that would require parents to complete a scientific course on immunization before sending their children to school unvaccinated.
Parents who object to vaccinations on moral or religious grounds may soon have to complete a course on the science of immunization. A bill proposed to the Ontario legislature would see all parents who request exemptions from public school immunization requirements complete an evidence-based class on the subject. The course aims to explain the benefits of vaccination, including herd immunity, and dispel some detrimental rumors that vaccines are harmful to children.
The bill comes soon after the province saw 591 students suspended from school due to a lack of immunization records. According to Ontario law, all students attending public schools must provide proof of immunization. This is done to prevent outbreaks of contagious illnesses, and in particular to protect children who, for legitimate medical reasons, cannot be vaccinated.
Currently, a school in another Canadian province is experiencing an outbreak of whooping cough, a potentially deadly illness that is preventable by vaccination. An outbreak of measles, a highly contagious virus that is one of the leading causes of child death, was attributed to substandard vaccination rates in the state of California. Studies have shown that schools and child care facilities with low vaccination rates are at an increased risk of outbreaks.
In the interest of protecting all children, including babies too young to be immunized, from deadly preventable illness, it is imperative that the myths surrounding vaccination are dispelled. This course will ensure that parents are aware of scientifically-based facts surrounding immunization. Sign the petition below to show your support for this measure, which could save children from preventable illness and death.
Dear Mr. Hoskins,
Parents requesting that their children be allowed to attend public school without vaccinations may soon be required to complete a course on the science of immunization. The evidence-based class would dispel harmful misinformation about the inefficacity or possible ill-effects of vaccinations.
By ensuring that all parents are informed of the risks to their children and other children, you would enable them to make a sound decision. If signed into law, this bill could prevent unecessary illness and even death due to preventable disease. We, the undersigned, urge you to do everything in your power to ensure that the bill is passed.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Jim Gathany