Action Alert

New Jersey: Please tell legislators to eliminate vaccination religious exemptions

The New Jersey Senate is poised to pass a piece of legislation eliminating religious exemptions from vaccine requirements for public school students.

Many states, including New Jersey, allow parents to claim a religious exemption from regulations that require they vaccinate their children. When parents choose not to vaccinate, it not only compromises the health of their own children, but also jeopardizes the “herd immunity” for those who cannot receive vaccinations for health reasons.

This bill, N.J. A. 3818, would improve the state’s ability to combat infectious diseases by removing the possibility of religious exemption from mandatory vaccines for children in public schools and day cares. For the past month, religious groups have flooded the state Capitol in opposition to this bill, claiming that “God wouldn’t give them anything they can’t handle.”

It is critical that we counter the influence of anti-science religious zealots, whose dangerous rhetoric has caused very serious and preventable infectious disease outbreaks in numerous states across the country. For example, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the reported individual cases of measles in the first five months of 2019 surpassed the total cases per year for the past 25 years. The states that see the highest incidences of the disease are those with the most relaxed exemption laws.

The New Jersey Senate is scheduled to vote on A. 3818 on Monday, Jan. 14. Please stand up for this common sense bill that will protect New Jersey residents from the dangerous implications of others people’s religious dogma. Please use our simple, automated system to ask your senator to support A. 3818 and feel free to use or adapt the provided talking points.

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