California parents react to proposed immunization law for children ages 12 and older

California lawmakers introduced a new law that would allow children ages 12 and older to get vaccinated without their parents’ permission. But some parents in Stockton aren’t so sure about the proposal. “I don’t think they have enough judgment or understanding of the situation to really analyze it for themselves,” a man who identified himself only as Ivan told KCRA 3. San Francisco Sen. Scott Wiener, a Democrat, introduced the bill before Thursday’s Teens Choose Vaccine Act, citing the need for more autonomy for young people.| RELATED | California law requires children as young as 12 to be vaccinated without parental consent. “This is not a new or radical idea. This is very much in line with existing law,” Wiener said. Young people and the elderly can receive medical treatment under current law when it comes to sexual, mental health and substance abuse, said Leslie Jacobs, a professor at the McGeorge School of Law. “In California we already have this a law that says minors can choose to have their parents refuse to give them the hepatitis vaccine or the HPV vaccine,” Jacobs said. The professor added that other states have similar laws. “The federal constitution gives parents a right to direct the upbringing of their children, but that does not include declining the necessary treatment,” Jacobs said. A KCRA 3 viewer asked how this would work with children with special needs, to which Jacobs said there are already safeguards under current law “Health care providers still have a professional and ethical obligation to ensure that the young person is mature enough to to make that decision,” Jacobs said. Stockton father Arthur Heredia said his two eldest children got the vaccine with his permission. But he said when it comes to medical decisions, the parents should be able to intervene for anything, for a field trip,” Heredia said. If the law is passed, it’s permissible, not mandatory. That means it will not be compulsory for children over the age of 12. The language of the bill gives children the option to be vaccinated if they so choose.

California lawmakers introduced a new law that would allow children ages 12 and older to get vaccinated without their parents’ permission. But some parents in Stockton aren’t so sure about the proposal.

“I don’t think they have enough judgment or understanding of the situation to really analyze it for themselves,” a man who identified himself only as Ivan told KCRA 3.

San Francisco Sen. Scott Wiener, a Democrat, introduced the bill Thursday, titled Teens Choose Vaccine Act, citing the need for young people to have more autonomy.

| RELATED | California law requires children as young as 12 to be vaccinated without parental consent

“This is not a new or radical idea. This is very much in line with applicable law,” Wiener said.

Juveniles and older children can receive medical treatment under current law when it comes to sexual, mental health and substance abuse, said Leslie Jacobs, a professor at the McGeorge School of Law.

“We already have a law in California that says minors can choose whether to vaccinate against hepatitis or HPV against their parents’ refusal,” Jacobs said.

The professor added that other states have similar laws.

“While the federal constitution gives parents the right to direct the upbringing of their children, that does not include refusing necessary treatment,” Jacobs said.

A KCRA 3 viewer asked how this would work with children with special needs, to which Jacobs said there are already protections under current law.

“Medical providers still have a professional and ethical obligation to ensure the adolescent is mature enough to make that decision,” Jacobs said.

Stockton’s father, Arthur Heredia, said his two eldest children got the vaccine with his permission. But he said when it comes to medical decisions, parents should be able to get involved.

“I can’t imagine a bunch of 13-year-olds going to Walgreens and queuing for their own vaccine. Parents have to sign off for everything, for a field trip,” said Heredia.

If passed, the law is permissible, not mandatory. This means that children over the age of 12 do not have to be vaccinated. The language of the bill gives children the opportunity to be vaccinated if they wish.

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