By B.N. Frank
Ohio is one of 4 states where COVID “Vaccine Lotteries” are being held to encourage citizens ages 12 and up to “roll up their sleeves”. Lawmakers who don’t support the lottery have introduced a bill to cancel it immediately. They have also introduced legislation to protect Ohioans who don’t want to take any vaccines.
More from Ars Technica:
Ohio lawmakers want to abolish vaccine requirements—all vaccine requirements
Someone would only have to verbally decline vaccination and cite “reasons of conscience.”
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s “Vax-a-Million” program began Wednesday, running the first of five $1-million weekly lottery drawings open to residents who have been vaccinated. The effort is one of many incentive programs across the country aimed at getting vaccine-hesitant groups to roll up their sleeves, get vaccinated against the deadly coronavirus, and help end the pandemic.
But, while the lottery has already been hailed as a success in boosting vaccination numbers, conservative lawmakers in the Buckeye State appear to be diligently working toward reversing that trend.
Lawmakers are working on legislation to call off the lottery immediately. They’re also trying to head off any plans for “vaccine passports.” And last month, they introduced a sweeping anti-vaccination bill that would essentially demolish public health and vaccination requirements in the state—and not just requirements for COVID-19 vaccines—requirements for any vaccine.
House Bill 248, introduced last month by Rep. Jennifer Gross (R-West Chester), would allow anyone to decline any vaccine with a simple verbal declaration based on “reasons of conscience.”
The bill would let people off the hook for vaccine requirements set by virtually any entity. The bill lists them, naming: individuals, businesses (like day cares), corporations, trusts, business trusts, estates, associations, partnerships, cities, counties, townships, municipal corporations, school districts, health districts, a city’s health board, any public official, public offices, or any state agency (defined as any institution or organization that receives any support from the state).
If any of the above entities even tries to institute a vaccine requirement, it would be required under HB 248 to notify people that they are able to decline. The entities are not allowed to disclose who has declined. And they “shall not discriminate against, deny service or access to, segregate, require a facial covering or other vaccination status label for, or otherwise penalize an individual financially or socially for declining a vaccination.”
HB 248 also notes that the act should be referred to as the “Vaccine Choice and Anti-Discrimination Act.”
“Vaccine Hesitancy” started long before COVID-19. Vaccine side effects, injuries, deaths have been reported for decades (see 1, 2, 3). They continue to be reported about COVID vaccines. Celebrity recipients have shared their horror stories as well (see 1, 2).
Image credit: Pixabay
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