AB 659 Language has changed AGAIN!
"Recommended" has been changed to "Advising" and the 6th Grade/Parent Notification includes Misleading Info
Call your Senator TODAY - They are voting this week and ask them to abstain from Voting on AB 659!
Bill Update: AB 659, the bill that A Voice for Choice Advocacy has been working hard to get amended throughout this CA legislative session. It started as an HPV vaccine mandate for schools and then colleges, and was amended to state it was "expected" that school and college students would get the HPV vaccine before enrolling. At the end of June it was further amended to make this a recommendation. This was a huge win! However, late last week AB 659 was amended further to change it from a recommendation to advisory information. This makes it a little more confusing again, but it still conveys that it is not a mandate. AVFCA prefers the recommendation language as that is consistent with other California Department of Public Health guidelines.
The last part of the bill which AVFCA has been trying to get amended is for the HPV vaccine notifications to only be sent to the parents/guardians and not to 6th grade children. There are no other notifications which are sent directly to students by a school. In the June 28, 3023 Health Committee meeting, Senator Eggman read a statement she said would be included in the notification. It read:
“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends the HPV Vaccination at age 11 or 12, although vaccination can be started at age 9. ACIP also recommends vaccination for everyone through age 26 if not adequately vaccinated when younger. The CDC states that HPV vaccines are very safe. Scientific research shows the benefits of HPV vaccinations far outweigh the potential risks.”
The new amendments to AB 659 ( [link removed] [[link removed]] ) clarify what would be included in this notification:
The notification sent pursuant to subdivision (b) shall also include a statement, as determined by the department, summarizing the recommended ages for the HPV vaccine and scientific rationale for vaccination at those ages, based on guidance issued by ACIP of the CDC, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Academy of Family Physicians. The notification shall further state the following:
“HPV vaccination can prevent over 90 percent of cancers caused by HPV. HPV vaccines are very safe, and scientific research shows that the benefits of HPV vaccination far outweigh the potential risks.”
While this follows Senator Eggman's statement for the most part, AVFCA takes issue with the additional sentence stating that HPV vaccination can prevent over 90 percent of cervical cancers caused by HPV." While this statement comes from the CDC website, it is misleading because:
1) It does not put it in context that only 0.007% of the US population is diagnosed with cervical cancer, so while it could prevent 90% of cancers caused by HPV, 99.993% of the population will never get this cancer to begin with.
2) HPV Vaccine efficacy still needs to be established. None of the HPV Vaccine clinical trials were designed to detect if the vaccine prevents cervical cancer. A January 2020 paper published by the Royal Society of Medicine raises serious concerns about the effectiveness of the HPV vaccine. The researchers found that the vaccine’s phase 2 and 3 trials were not designed to detect cervical cancer, which takes decades to develop ( [link removed] [[link removed]] ). The first HPV vaccine was introduced in the US in 2006, 17 years ago, so the oldest HPV vaccinated teens are now 30 years old. The median age of HPV diagnosis is 50 years old, so Merck’s cancer prevention claim will not be verified for another 20 years.
AVFCA continues to request that the notification for this HPV recommendation only be sent to parents/guardians and NOT 6th graders, and we now also requesting that this statement be removed unless it is quantified. AVFCA asks you to call your Senator today and ask them to Vote NO or abstain on AB 659 unless it is amended.
TAKE ACTION TODAY - CALL YOUR CA STATE SENATOR: oAB 659 will be voted on by the full Senate as early as tomorrow.
1) If you don't know who they are, find your State Senator by putting your address into this locator ( [link removed] [[link removed]] ).
2) Then find your Senator's contact information here: [link removed] [[link removed]] and call both their Capitol office and their District office(s) asking them to oppose abastain on AB 659.
Sample Script: "I am a constituent. I am calling to ask the Senator to vote No or Abstain on AB 659, Assembly Member Aguiar Curry's HPV Vaccine bill when they are voted on on the Senate Floor. 6th Graders are too young to recieve vaccine notifications, especially when they include misleading, incomplete infromation that has been added with recent amendments.”
Over the past 8 years, A Voice for Choice Advocacy has established itself as the leading legislative organization lobbying in the California Capitol for your health rights. While A Voice for Choice Advocacy's lobbying activity in the Capitol is important, your positive constituent relationships with your CA State Senator and Assembly Member and their staff are critical to assisting with A Voice for Choice Advocacy's efforts in the Capitol. Please call your Senator TODAY!
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