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REQUIRES the health dept. to make exemption affidavits available on their website and in schools

Location: TX
Title: REQUIRES the health dept. to make exemption affidavits available on their website and in schools
Identifier: HB 1124/ SB 2008
Stance: OPPOSE UNLESS SUBSTITUTED
Action Required: None
Status: Died HB 1124 left pending in House Public Health Committee and SB 2008 never got a hearing

Description:

UDATE: 5/28/2017 HB 1124 died never getting out of committee and a committee substitute to reinstate the attempted repeal of privacy protections was never adopted.  Please see corresponding alert for more information.

UPDATE 5/1/2017 - HB 1124 was left pending in committee after the public hearing on 4/25/2017.  A promised committee substitute to reinstate privacy protections for families using vaccine exemptions was never adopted. Action Alert for additional information. 

UPDATE 4/21/2017: HB 1124 is scheduled for public hearing on 4/25/2017.

HB 1124 was filed on 1/18/2017 and is sponsored by Rep. Krause. SB 2008 was introduced on 3/10/2017 and is sponsored by Senator Taylor.  

These bills would require the health department to make the blank affidavit form to be used by a person claiming an exemption from a required immunization available on the department's Internet website and in all public schools.  

While HB 1124 and SB 2008 appear to just put an electronic copy of the conscientious exemption online, section 2 of the bill calls for the repeal of 161.0041 (e) which states:

(e)  The department shall maintain a record of the total number of affidavit forms sent out each year and shall report that information to the legislature each year.  The department may not maintain a record of the names of individuals who request an affidavit under this section.

It was this bolded section in state law that should have never been repealed by these bills.  This is an open invitation to the department to collect names and addresses and whatever else they want from those trying to get the “blank” form. 

Instead of repealing (e), we are requesting the bills be substituted to do this instead:

(e)  [The department shall maintain a record of the total number of affidavit forms sent out each year and shall report that information to the legislature each year.] The department may not maintain a record of the names or addresses of individuals who request an affidavit under this section.

Please see the action alert in the section above on HB 1124 for more information.

http://www.legis.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=85R&Bill=HB1124 - text, status and history 

http://www.legis.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=85R&Bill=SB2008 - text, status and history