STOCKTON, Calif, (KTXL) — A new proposed bill in the California Legislature would allow children to get vaccinated against COVID-19 without their parents permission.
State Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, proposed Senate Bill 866 on Thursday. If passed, the bill would mean children from 12 to 17 years old could get any vaccine, including ones for COVID-19, without parental consent.
Veronica Rubio, 11, has had many conversations with her mother and said it was her choice to get vaccinated against COVID-19. She added kids like her can make that decision for themselves.
“She thinks it’s a good idea, but she didn’t tell me to get it,” Rubio said. “I said in my own words that I wanted to get it because I want to be safe and others safe too.”
Veronica’s mother, Irma, is a parent who approves of the proposed bill and said she trusts her kids to make their own health decisions.
“All three of my kids are very responsible with their health,” Irma said. “I think they can do that decision because I’m always trying to teach them how to protect themselves.”
However, other parents are on the fence about the proposed bill.
“I think I would like to have a little bit more information prior to making that decision,” said Thaddeus Smith III.
“The lower end of that parameter, that window of age definitely makes me a little bit more hesitant,” Smith continued. “The higher end, I’m not so hesitant because, like I said, if you’re 15, 16, you can drive a car. Why can’t you get a vaccination if that’s what you want to do?”
California currently allows children 12 and up to get vaccinated without their parent’s consent, but only if it’s related to sexually transmitted infections such as hepatitis B and human papillomavirus.
If Wiener’s bill is passed, it will only apply to vaccines that have full approval from both the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.