Vaccine Rights
Home Exemptions E-Book Consultations Q&A Attorney Phillips

Vaccine Choice:
The Legislative Agenda

Last updated 1-17-15

| Help With Legislation | LEGISLATIVE AGENDA |
| Legislative ProjectsPandemic Response Project |

     The federal government lacks authority to mandate vaccines for state residents directly, so legislation at the state level may be the higher priority for most U.S. citizens. However, important legislative change is needed at both the state and federal level. This list below identifies specific legislative issues. Send inquiries or suggestions for other issues to list here to Attorney Phillips here.

Vaccine E-Book
*Many of these issues apply to most states

  1. Emergency Health Laws: Most states can mandate vaccines without exemptions in a declared emergency, and quarantine non-vaccinated persons in government facilities against their will. State residents should have the right to refuse fast-track, emergency vaccines and other medical protocol, and to quarantine in their homes or other lawful locations. Resource: The Pandemic Response Project website.

    Resource: The Model Self-Shielding Protection Act drafted by Attorneys Diane Miller of National Health Freedom and Alan Phillips.

  2. Philosophical Exemptions: 30 or more states do not have a philosophical or personal exemption. Please note that states exemptions may not apply in declared emergencies unless emergency health laws are amended. 
  3. Healthcare Employees: Some states have laws requiring healthcare employees to be vaccinated; more and more healthcare facilities are mandating influenza and other vaccines for healthcare employees every year. Vaccines are also required for college students doing clinical work in college healthcare programs, and state exemption laws don't apply to clinical site vaccine mandates.

  4. Notification of Exemption Rights: Most states are not required to notify citizens of exemption rights whenever announcing exemption requirements. This amounts to the state endorsing one of two or more legal options.

  5. Outdated Religious Exemption Statutes: Some states require require membership in an organized religion with tenets opposed to immunization requirements to exercise a religious exemption. This violates the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, but laws are not officially unconstitutional unless a court says so.

  6. Children Excluded from School During Outbreaks: Exempt kids have to stay home from school for the incubation period of the disease during an outbreak. 'Outbreak' is defined as anything more than usual--that is, a single disease case. This can result in exempt children being excluded from school repeatedly due to isolated, recurring chicken pox cases. This raises Constitutional and other legal concerns, as non-vaccinated kids are required to stay home, but not vaccinated kids whose vaccines didn't work (vaccines don't work in all kids!). See this article for details: Excluding Unvaccinated Children from School During Outbreaks: Standard Policy, But is it Legal? 

  7. Vaccines Administered in Public Schools: Some schools around the country administered seasonal and swine flu vaccines in 2009. Schools should be allowed to become vaccination distribution points; this is a medical procedure.

    Resource: “
    Attorney Questions School Flu Shots”, a Dec 2009 article by Attorney Phillips.
  8. Immunization Registries: Parents should have the right to “opt-out” of immunization registries. Better yet, parents should have to "opt-in" to participate in the first place.

  9. Unethical State Exemption Forms: When a state exemption form requires you to agree with "facts" with which you do not agree, the state is violating your Constitutional rights. These forms need to be revised. It is OK for states to, for instance, require you to sign a form saying you understand the state's views, but not that you agree with those views.

  10. Unethical Pediatric Practices: Pediatricians are increasingly requiring parents to sign the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Refusal to Vaccinate Form. This form contains the statement: “I know that failure to follow the recommendations about vaccination may endanger the health or life of my child and others with which my child might come into contact.” This raises serious ethical and legal questions. Laws need to be enacted prohibiting doctors from using the AAP Refusal to Vaccinate Form or any similar language.

    Resource: “Refusal to Vaccinate Forms Raise Ethical Questions”, an article published by Attorney Phillips in The Townsend Letter, available at the Vaccine Rights
    Articles page.

  11. Pets: There are the same general adverse events concerns with pets as there are for humans. A few states actually allow medical exemptions for dogs. While animals do not have religious or philosophical beliefs in any sense recognized by law, the same health issues exist for vaccinated animals as for humans. Accordingly, pet owners should have the right to make informed choices.
  12. Thimerosol-free Vaccines: The “Green Your Vaccine” movement aims to have vaccines produced without the use of the mercury-based preservative thimerosol. However, there are many problematic vaccine ingredients. Some doctors feel the aluminum in vaccines is more dangerous than mercury, for example. Given the extensive corruption behind vaccine policy and law, parents simply need the right to make an informed choice, which would likely result in some children getting at least some vaccines. Perhaps more importantly, parents should be free to avail themselves of proven alternatives to vaccines, instead of being limited to allopathic immunization. E.g., see A Remarkable Successful Use of Homeopathic Prophylaxis (homeopathic immunization) - 2.5 Million Protected in Cuba, January 1, 2009; and Vitamin D better than vaccines at preventing flu, report claims.
  13. Under-18 Requires Parental Consent: Some state laws allow minors to choose whether or not to be vaccinated, without parental consent. Such laws are unconstitutional, since a minor's religion for legal purposes is that of the parents, and a willing 16 year old's parent(s) may object to vaccines on religious grounds. E.g., NC's sec. 90-21.5 allows "Any minor may give effective consent to a physician . . . for medical health services for the prevention . . . of venereal disease and other diseases..." See this legal brief explaining the many ways NC's law violates the state and federal Constitution. [Please note that the Chapel Hill mailing address listed is not my current address.]

 Alan Phillips, Attorney at, 828-676-2831
© July 2015