Last week, we told you that a joint resolution has been introduced in Congress to try to stop a District of Columbia bill that would let children as young as 11 be vaccinated without their parents’ consent. Thanks to your calls and emails, a number of congressmen and senators have signed on to support the resolution, but this is only the beginning of the fight.

DC bill 23-171 states that “a minor, eleven years of age or older, may consent to receive a vaccine where the minor is capable of meeting the informed consent standard, and the vaccine is recommended by the United States Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP).”

But it doesn’t stop there; the bill also prohibits the medical provider from documenting the vaccination in the medical record, restricting parents’ ability to know the vaccination took place. It also prevents insurance companies from providing an explanation of benefits that would include the vaccination.

While HSLDA does not take a position on vaccines, we do believe that parents should have the right to make informed medical decisions for their children. This bill is a clear attempt to remove that right from parents. No state has yet passed legislation as radical as this, and DC cannot be allowed to become the first jurisdiction to do so.

The solutions

Fortunately, because DC is not a state, all of the bills passed by the DC Council are subject to a 30-day congressional review period. If Congress introduces a bill disapproving of a DC law, and President Biden signs that bill within the 30 days, then the DC bill will not be enacted.

Earlier this month, Senator Mike Lee (UT) and Congressman Michael Cloud (TX) introduced S.J. Res. 7 in the Senate and H.J. Res. 25 in Congress, disapproving of DC’s minor-consent vaccination bill.

Since then, S.J. Res. 7 has received five new cosponsors: Senators Rand Paul (KY), Kevin Cramer (ND), Mike Braun (IN), Jim Inhofe (OK), and James Lankford (OK).

And in addition to Rep. Cloud, nine others have signed on to H.J. Res. 25: Gary Palmer (AL), Jeff Duncan (SC), Doug LaMalfa (CA), Bill Posey (FL), Jim Jordan (OH), Brian Babin (TX), Ralph Norman (SC), Mary Miller (IL), and Greg Steube (FL).

Congressman Cloud summed up the issue well:

“Parents have a moral and constitutional right to make major medical decisions for their minor children. In this case, the DC government is wrongfully interfering within that right. It is not appropriate for young children to make medical decisions for themselves, and allowing a non-parent adult to establish consent on behalf of a child sets a bad precedent. I’m deeply concerned by the District’s dangerous attempt to threaten children and families. It is Congress’ duty to fight back against the erosion of parental rights in America.”

There is less than a month to get the resolution onto the president’s desk. Due to the current balance of power in Congress, that will take a bipartisan effort.

But this isn’t a partisan issue; protecting parental rights should be a priority for every legislator who is or who wants to be a parent. Parents have the right to be involved in their children’s lives, regardless of political party. To stop this law from coming to your own state, please click here to contact your senators and members of Congress and ask them to support S.J. Res. 7 and H.J. Res. 25.