Article about Ohio bill initiates debate about vaccine mandates

Last week, the Ohio Capitol Journal published an article about HB 319—the “Conscientious Right to Refuse Act”—which would prevent employers and institutions in Ohio from placing restrictions on those who refuse vaccines or other medical treatments due to personal or religious beliefs. Many social media users who shared the article expressed concerns that this bill will negatively impact public health, while others questioned whether or not unvaccinated people put others at risk.

Recommendation: Trending conversations about HB 319 provide an opportunity for community-based organizations and other partners in Ohio to use existing content and materials to educate the public on the effectiveness of routine vaccines. Messaging may emphasize that recommended vaccines prevent severe illness and death from dangerous diseases. High vaccination exemption rates correspond with an increase in outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases because declining vaccination rates jeopardize herd immunity.