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D.C. Schools Can’t Vaccinate Kids 11 and Up Without Parents’ Consent Until Lawsuits Settled

The Defender | April 28, 2022

preliminary injunction prohibiting the mayor of the District of Columbia, the D.C. Department of Health and D.C. public schools from enforcing the D.C. Minor Consent for Vaccination Amendment Act of 2020 (D.C. Minor Consent Act) will remain in place after the defendants declined to file an appeal within the required 30-day period.

The preliminary injunction reverts D.C. to the standard age of consent of 18, at least until the conclusion of the case.

The injunction stemmed from two lawsuits filed against the D.C. Minor Consent Act, which allows children 11 and older to consent to vaccinations without their parents’ knowledge or consent.

The law, passed on Dec. 17, 2020, specifically targets children whose parents filed religious exemptions for their children.

“This is a significant legal victory,” said Rolf Hazlehurst, senior staff attorney for Children’s Health Defense (CHD). “But the legal battle is by no means over.”

D.C. is the legal testing ground for mandatory vaccinations, according to Hazlehurst, which makes this a “high-stakes” battle.

“The defendants and other states are twisting and distorting the ‘mature minor’ doctrine to push the limits of government overreach at the expense of parental rights,” Hazlehurst said. “They will not abandon this tactic or their assault upon our children or parental rights.”

The two lawsuits challenging the D.C. Minor Consent Act include one filed by CHD and the Parental Rights Foundation and a second brought by Informed Consent Action Network.

Both lawsuits sought a preliminary injunction to immediately prohibit D.C. schools and public health officials from enforcing the law until the lawsuits are concluded.

During oral arguments on March 3, Hazlehurst argued the D.C. Minor Consent Act violates the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution because it contains multiple provisions that strip away the meager protections guaranteed to parents under the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986.

Hazlehurst also argued the law violates the right to freedom of religion guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Hazlehurst told the court the mayor of D.C. created a “pressure-cooker environment,” enticing and psychologically manipulating minor children to defy their parents and take vaccinations against their parents’ will.

To make his point, Hazlehurst relied on a drawing, “Peer Pressure,” by a child of one of the plaintiffs. The drawing depicts the dilemma children face at school when they don’t want to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

On March 18, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ordered the preliminary injunction.

In obtaining the preliminary injunction, the plaintiffs overcame a high legal hurdle that the “threatened injury must be certainly impending” as established by the U.S. Supreme Court precedent Clapper v. Amnesty Int’l, Hazlehurst said.

The court also ruled the plaintiffs in both lawsuits have legal standing based on preemption because the D.C. Minor Consent Act conflicts with the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act.

In CHD’s case, U.S. District Judge Trevor N. McFadden made the additional finding that the plaintiffs have standing based upon the fact that they are likely to succeed on the merits that the law violates the free exercise of religion clause in the First Amendment.

“This preliminary injunction is part of ongoing litigation in an extremely important national precedent-setting case,” said Hazlehurst. “The rights of parents to decide what is best for their children’s health is at stake. Government can’t be allowed to make such decisions for minor children.”

The D.C. Minor Consent Act contains several provisions designed to deceive parents by hiding the fact that their children have been vaccinated against their parental judgment, authority or religious convictions.

The law requires healthcare providers to falsify records by leaving the child’s school vaccination records blank.

It also allows doctors to bill parents’ insurance companies for vaccines administered to children against their parents’ written directive. However, insurance companies may not send parents of those children an explanation of benefits.

April 29, 2022 - Posted by | Civil Liberties | , ,

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