Health Impact News

New Jersey politicians are making moves to restrict religious exemptions to refuse vaccines.  Bill A1931 is scheduled for a 10:00 am Assembly Health Committee meeting on MONDAY, MARCH 16, 2015. According to NVIC:

A1931 requires a written statement “explaining how the administration of the vaccine conflicts with the bona fide religious tenets or practices of the student, or the parent or guardian.” As such it requires parents to explain and ultimately justify their deeply held personal and private religious beliefs to the government.

The Action Alert from NVIC for New Jersey:

We will need a HUGE turnout in Trenton, both testifying and just showing up on MONDAY, MARCH 16, 2015.

The full bill –


Both calls and emails to Assembly Health Committee Members – Ask them to VOTE NO on A1931 and preserve the current religious exemption that is working as intended.  NJ does not Need A1931. (Calls are best – more points below)  Always be polite and let them know you are a NJ resident and a constituent (if in their district). This is about our kids and families.  (The numbers in ( ) are the legislator’s district)

Herb Conaway (7) 856-461-3997 (Bill Sponsor)

Daniel Benson (14) 609-631-0198

Mary Pat Angelini (11) 732-531-1045

Tim Eustace (38)  (201) 576 – 9199

Angel Fuentes (5)  856-547-4800

Jerry Green (22)  908-561-5757

Amy Handlin (13)  732-383-7820

Angelica Jimenez (32)  201-223-4247

Nancy Munoz (21)   908-918-0414

Erik Peterson (23)  908- 238-0251

Nancy Pinkin (18) 732-548-1406

Shavonda Sumter (35) 973- 925-7061


Please email if you are able to make it to Trenton on Monday, March 16th.

Plan to meet in the Café at 9am.  More instructions and directions to be shared with those attending.


Please add your personal message as well.

A1931 is discriminatory in nature as the bill sets the stage for unfair application of its dictates for people of numerous different faiths.

We strongly oppose A1931 because many families who warrant a religious exemption to vaccination will potentially be unable to qualify for that exemption if this bill passes.  A1931 requires a written statement…explaining how the administration of the vaccine conflicts with the bona fide religious tenets or practices of the student…”

A1931 is not needed and will require a cumbersome and discriminatory process for parents to exercise their right to claim a religious exemption to vaccination. A1931 will not change a child’s vaccination status; it will just subject the family trying to follow the law, to claim the religious exemption, to unfair and subjective harassment.

Who will decide what constitutes a bona fide religious belief? Putting the state in the position to determine what is and what is not a legitimate religious belief is extremely troubling, problematic and creates a discriminatory process with potential constitutional infringement.

The current religious exemption statute is sufficient and working as intended.  In 2008, a Health Department memo adopted a change in guidelines to correct the non-uniformity, harassment, intimidation and discrimination that parents were facing for several years. “NJDHSS hopes that the information provided will enable schools, child care facilities and local health departments to process requests for exemptions in a more uniform and expeditious manner.”  A1931 will turn back the clock and return us to the time of harassment and discrimination.

Please call your Assembly members and those above ask them to please STAND UP for parents, please PROTECTthe exercise of religious freedoms, and please PREVENT violations of religious rights.    DO NOT SUPPORT A1931.

If you receive a response to your email, please follow up with a thank you for your response and provide additional information, reiterating your point.  If you are able to call and talk for a few minutes with your assemblyman or assemblywoman stop by their office, all the better.  Remember, be polite and calm, don’t get angry.

NVIC Portal for Information about New Jersey and ALL STATES.

New Jersey Coalition For Vaccination Choice