If anyone is able to attend, there will be a Human Services Committee Hearing on HB 4406 on Monday, Mar 24 2014 at 3:30PM at Stratton Building Room 413 in Springfield, IL.
HB 4406 would provide a religious exemption to staff member immunizations for child care centers. The relevant bill text is below. Here's are a few relevant talking points if an opportunity to speak is available:
- When parents place their children in a child care center, they expect the facilities to meet minimum health, safety, and caregiver-training standards set by law. But if a child care worker is religiously exempted from vaccinnations, they may unknowingly be putting their children at risk.
- Unvaccinated child care workers place everyone at risk, but especially babies too young to be vaccinated and those who, for medical reasons, are not vaccinated.
- As vaccination rates have fallen, the number of measles and pertussis (whooping cough) cases has risen.
- In the U.S., children with personal belief exemptions are 35 times more likely to contract measles than properly vaccinated children.
- Public health officials have called upon legislators to make belief exemptions harder to obtain. Four states have passed laws requiring parents to listen to or watch medically accurate information about vaccines before being granted a belief exemption from immunizations for their children.
- This bill is the wrong direction for Illinois. We should be protecting our children more, not less.
HB 4406 Excerpt
9 The licensing standards of the Department for licensed
10 day care centers and licensed day care homes shall include a
11 requirement that such facilities adopt policies regarding
12 immunizations for day care staff. The facilities may use the
13 most current recommendations of the Advisory Committee on
14 Immunization Practices (ACIP) as a guideline for such policies.
15 The licensure standards shall include appropriate exemptions
16 for day care staff who object on the grounds that they conflict
17 with the tenets and practices of a recognized church or
18 religious organization, of which the staff person is an
19 adherent or member, and for staff members who should not be
20 subjected to immunization for clinical reasons.