Bills allowing COVID-19 vaccine religious exemptions for children don’t pass Virginia Senate committee

Capitol Connection

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Two Virginia bills that would have allowed a parent or guardian to refuse a COVID-19 vaccine for their child citing religious practices will not advance.

The Senate Education and Health Committee killed the two bills Thursday morning.

The bills, SB 1116 and SB 1117 would have allowed the refusal of the COVID-19 vaccine even if an emergency or epidemic was declared by the State Board of Health.

Under current law, the only exception to the State Health Commissioner’s power to require immediate immunization of all persons in case of an epidemic of any disease of public health importance for which a vaccine exists is for a person to whose health the administration of a vaccine would be detrimental as certified in writing by a physician licensed to practice medicine in the Commonwealth.

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