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Checking In On Impact, Implementation And Response To California’s Two Newest Vaccine Exemption Laws




First partner of California Jennifer Siebel Newsom speaks at the Women's March California 2019 on January 19, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.
First partner of California Jennifer Siebel Newsom speaks at the Women's March California 2019 on January 19, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.
Sarah Morris/Getty Images

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On Monday, First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom addressed anti-vaccine protesters who had gathered outside her house in Sacramento, saying her husband’s administration is taking their concerns into consideration and that she thought there should be further discussion over the necessity of certain immunizations.

It’s the latest example of how the statewide discussion over vaccine requirements and the state’s oversight of exemptions for those requirements is continuing this year in the wake of two new laws that Governor Gavin Newsom signed that went into effect on the first of this year. SB 276 established state oversight of vaccine exemptions that doctors issue and SB 714 was a follow-up bill that folded in some new rules about implementation that Governor Newsom requested. But despite the bills now being law, the debate between lawmakers and anti-vaccine protesters continues over who should receive exemptions, under what circumstances and the extent of the oversight role the state should play. Meanwhile, across the state, some stakeholders say there is still some confusion about the specifics of the rules.

Today on AirTalk, we’ll explore the current politics surrounding the debate over state oversight of vaccine exemptions, retrace the path the state took to get to this point, and take your calls. Are you a doctor, school nurse, parent or faculty member, we’d like to hear from you at 866-893-5722.

We reached out to Governor Gavin Newsom and First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom and invited them to join the conversation, but we have not heard back from their respective offices. We will update this if we receive a response. We also contacted Senator Richard Pan and California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly, but they were not available to join us at the time we requested.

With guest host Steven Cuevas

Guest:

Melody Gutierrez, reporter covering state government and politics in Sacramento for The Los Angeles Times; she tweets @MelodyGutierrez