Governor Wants To Keep Philosophical Exemption

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Gov. Peter Shumlin has reversed a position pushed by his administration earlier this year and has come out in favor of continuing to allow parents to opt out of having their kids vaccinated for philosophical reasons.

Shumlin’s health commissioner, Harry Chen, wanted an end to the philosophical exemption from the requirement that kids get immunizations before attending school. He and other backers of making vaccines more difficult to avoid say they’re an important public health measure and keep diseases ranging from polio to whooping cough at bay.

The Senate has voted to remove the philosophical exemption, while the House has voted to maintain it and beef up education about vaccines for parents.

On Wednesday, Shumlin said he does not want to force parents to vaccinate their kids.

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