Vaccine Laws – What’s New in Early 2022?
By Cathy Jameson
I’ve stayed active watching vaccine bills locally and across the country for many years now, voicing my concerns when I can. I’m borrowing my own words that I shared 2 years ago:
I never used to pay attention to politics when I was younger. I knew the basics and recognized who sat in the top government positions, but that was about it. Now, I read and watch everything I can about it. From what’s happening on the state level all the way through to the federal level, I scour the news looking at what my and other representatives across the country are talking about. When vaccines are on the docket, I pay even more attention. What happens in one state could very well happen in another. (From All Hands on Deck for Vaccine Bills Across the USA, 1 March 2020)
That post came to mind when I got an alert about some bills that were soon to be heard in my state. With state legislation in session now, I’ll continue to look at what’s on the docket.
Legislative sessions for 2022 have already begun in many states:
Curious about your state’s calendar? This pdf lists specific dates of regular sessions and also special sessions. Curious about what your state recorded last session? StateScan Roundup recaps some of who did what and when. Want to get a leg up on certain bills? This group offers alerts specific to whatever causes you wish to track. Want to see what’s being watched by the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) Advocacy Team, a group that keeps an eye on all state bills related to vaccines? Click this link to find the latest information and action alerts. (Log in is free but required to access more detailed information on their portal.) Want to know who represents you? Click your home state’s abbreviation on this map (or type the state name in the box below that map) to see who’s sitting in office now.
I used to feel so intimidated by those working in legislation. Heck, I was even intimidated by the legislative process itself! Schoolhouse Rock made it look so easy, but I shied away from it as much as possible.
Writing bills, lobbying, voting, enacting – those were things other people did, not me. Maybe years ago it was easier. But shady doings protecting liability-free medical products have become a big part of politics. How could I, a simple housewife and mother, have any sort of power to make any sort of change? Could my efforts really help? maybe I really wouldn’t know unless I tried to make a difference.
The uneasiness I felt toward all things politics changed the more I learned and the more I got involved. With legislative information system data so readily at my fingertips, to include vaccine-specific data as well as COVID-19 data (with some of it pertaining to vaccines), I can quite easily continue to help make a change.
You can, too.
As parents, we juggle a lot. Our kids and our families are our top priority. Politics, especially during our state’s legislative session, should be also. If your state has introduced or is getting ready to vote on a vaccine bill, stay on top of it. Some of them are good, and we’d love to help you support them. But others…can cause damage—and not just physically. They can destroy any glimmer of hope and whatever little bit of trust a faithful citizen may have once had in the system. (again from All Hands on Deck for Vaccine Bills Across the USA, 1 March 2020)
If you haven’t had a chance to jump into this sort of advocacy yet and need a few tips on how to get started, check out this video shared in June of 2021. By informing other concerned parents of what’s going on, by writing a letter, or sending a fax or an email to your representatives, or by making a phone call to a state representative’s office, our voices can be heard. Some people may not want to hear what we have to say, but each time we call, email or send a letter, our concerns are heard. We may not be listened to, but we’ve done something – we’ve spoken up. I’ll always hope that in speaking up I have made a positive difference, if not for me and my kids, for the next generation of kids and their parents.
Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.
Other links worth checking out:
Autism Action Network http://autismactionnetwork.org/
Children’s Health Defense https://childrenshealthdefense.org/protecting-our-future/health-freedom/?itm_term=home
Have a great state or local link that helps the average citizen become an armchair advocate? Consider sharing it in the comment section below. Thank you!