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Old 04-24-2008, 12:19 PM   #1
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Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

I have now heard from two people around here that Atlanta public schools will no longer accept religious waivers for vaccines . How can they do that?? Are they allowed to do that? Isn't that an infringement of my freedom of religion?

I'm selectively vaxing and not for religious purposes, but that is the only waiver that has been available in Georgia, and now its gone! What do I do when its time for my kids to go to school??

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Old 04-24-2008, 12:27 PM   #2
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

I didn't think they could do that legally either. How is this possible? We've also signed for religious exemption but we don't use the public school system but it wouldn't surprise me if somebody tried to change the laws to cause problems for us too.

I'm sorry mama, I hope somebody has information to help you!
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:13 PM   #3
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

Compulsory vaccination is illegal in every state. What is likely going on here is that the school board made a decision to "make vaccines mandatory" but there is no law on the books. Every school and day care everywhere is under the assumption that they can make the rules about this but when it comes right down to it, they can't. Fight it. They HAVE to take that waiver unless the state legislation is saying something different - in which case, that's a case for this nation's Supreme Court on several grounds, freedom of religion only being one of them.
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:16 PM   #4
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

Ditto Nebula.
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:34 PM   #5
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

I would ask your sources for a source. I'm in GA and have heard nothing of the sort on the news or anything. My boys are in a private Montessori school south of Atlanta (Henry County) and they accepted the religious exemptions in January. I also had James at the doctor yesterday and we talked about his upcoming well baby visit and the fact that he is not vaccinated at all and she didn't mention any upcoming changes to the rules. If your kids are in Atlanta Public Schools, you might could place an anonymous phone call to the school or school board and fish around a little but otherwise I think I would keep my mouth shut until someone tells me that my exemption is not valid and then I'd fight like h3ll!
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:37 PM   #6
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

There are at least two states in the US that only allow medical exemptions (West Virginia and Mississippi). It could be that Georgia is changing their laws to no longer allow religious exemptions. However, if they are not changing laws statewide then I don't believe an individual public school can change their policy. The state's law trumps school policy. I would call the Georgia State Department of Human Resources Immunization Office and ask if the state law is changing to no longer allow religious exemptions. If it's not, I would inquire about the legality of individual schools changing their policy to no longer accept religious exemption; I highly doubt they have any legal standing to do so.

I looked up the contact info for the Georgia SDHR Immunization office for you:
2 Peachtree St NW
Atlanta, GA 30303
404-657-3158
(Fax) 404-657-1463
immunization@dhr.state.ga.us
http://health.state.ga.us/programs/immunization/
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:40 PM   #7
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

Wow. So if you live in those two states, you have to give your child immunizations or they can't go to school? My first child is immunized fully but I am still against that. My 2nd child will get delayed.

That seems so unconstitutional to me.
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Old 04-24-2008, 01:45 PM   #8
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

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Originally Posted by ladylee View Post
Wow. So if you live in those two states, you have to give your child immunizations or they can't go to school?

That seems so unconstitutional to me.
I agree; it does somehow seem a violation of the constitutional right to freedom of religion. However, it may not be that black and white... I don't live in either of those states and have no intent to ever do so, so I've never really checked out what the exact wording of the law is or if there are any loopholes that parents can get through.
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Old 04-24-2008, 02:37 PM   #9
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

Thanks ladies. My kinds aren't school age yet but I'm pretty new to making these vaccine decisions and it freaked me out when I heard this--it was making me second-guess my decision.
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Old 04-24-2008, 04:13 PM   #10
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Re: Atlanta schools no longer accepting vax waivers???

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Originally Posted by lydiamom View Post
Thanks ladies. My kinds aren't school age yet but I'm pretty new to making these vaccine decisions and it freaked me out when I heard this--it was making me second-guess my decision.
Even if you wind up sending them to a school (wherever) that doesn't allow religious or philosphical exemptions, their bodies should be better able to handle the assault of the vaccines at 5 or 6 years old than as babies. Right now, in GA, as in most other states I've looked at, if the vaxes are not up to date when they start school, they have a period of time to "catch up" so even if there is a question, I would say to wait. Out of all the arguments I've heard from pro-vaxers, about the silliest excuse for vaxing a newborn has to be "They need the vaxes to get in school."
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