West Virginia Governor Vetoes Bill Easing School Vaccine Exemptions


Governor Jim Justice of West Virginia has rejected the bill that would have made it easier for kids to go to school without having to get vaccinated.

The bill, which was highly supported by the legislature, would have let students in private, parochial, and virtual schools say they didn’t want to get their shots for religious reasons.

The governor said that he had to let the doctors decide what to do.

DK Wright asked the head of the Ohio County Health Department what he thought.

That’s good news for Howard Gamble.

He says that making people get vaccinated has always been good for public health here.

He said that vaccines stop sickness and death.

And this group has not been sick or lost a loved one because West Virginia has had strong vaccine rules in the past.

It’s still a good public health measure. It still provides the protection so overall, especially in this county, where the three different types of school systems that we do have, I think it’s a good thing. It allows the children to remain in school but also get the vaccinations so we can keep diseases at bay.

Howard Gamble | Ohio County Health Department, Administrator

Schools like Wheeling Central and Linsly would have been able to use faith exemptions to not get vaccinated under this bill.

On the other hand, the bishop of the Catholic Diocese of West Virginia had already said that they would get all of their shots.

It was brave and the right thing to do, say many medical groups, for the governor to kill the bill.

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