Canada’s government recently proposed a legislation that would require parents and/or guardians to attend an “education session” before their children can be exempt from receiving any vaccination.
According to CBC News, if passed, the proposal would also “require health-care providers to report to the public health unit what vaccines are given to children, in an attempt to reduce school suspensions over out-of-date immunization records.”
Currently, the Immunization of School Pupils Act requires Ontario children to receive certain vaccines before they can attend school, including diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (aka, whooping cough), measles, mumps, rubella, polio and meningococcal disease. In Ontario, if parents choose not to immunize their children for medical, religious, or philosophical reasons, they must produce a valid signed exemption form.
Eric Hoskins, Ontario’s minister of health and long-term care, reiterated in a statement given last Thursday, “choosing to vaccinate your child [not only] protects them from [acquiring the] disease, and it protects vulnerable children who can’t get vaccinated for medical reasons.” Hoskins also added, “that’s why it’s important for parents to keep their children’s immunizations up to date.”
“If passed, the proposed amendments to the Immunization of School Pupils Act would help parents and guardians make informed decisions about vaccination.”
Ontario’s chief medical officer of health in 2014, Dr. Arlene King, told CBC there is a lot of unfounded, unsubstantiated information and myths about vaccines, and recommended that parents speak to their health-care provider if they have questions.
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