The Connecticut State Senate authorized a bill Tuesday evening to end a religious exemption from mandatory school vaccinations after 9 hours of contentious debate, Fox News reports.
The Hartford Courant reported that Gov. Ned Lamont, a Democrat, vowed to quickly sign the legislation that was approved in a 22-14 vote.
The Republicans and two Democrats who opposed the bill claimed that First Amendment freedoms have been being disregarded. According to The Hartford Courant, critics say the bill violates the state’s constitutional guarantee to provide an education and pledged to file a lawsuit to stop it from taking effect.
The bill would remove Connecticut's religious and medical exemptions for schools beginning with the 2022 school year. https://t.co/HmrYQFSOLt
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“This is discrimination and it goes against our First Amendment,’’ said the Rev. Yashica Blue, the minister of a non-denominational church in Hartford. She wore a T-shirt that read “This mom calls the shots.”
Fox 61 reported that thousands of parents and children protested outside the State Capitol earlier in the day to voice their objection to the bill that will take effect in 2022. It does not require a COVID-19 jab.
“It’s not something I’m willing to do. I don’t co-parent with the government; I co-parent with my husband and I’m doing what’s best for my children and my body,” one protester told the news station.
Connecticut will become the sixth state to end religious exemptions when it comes to vaccinations.