State Reps. Beth Liston (D-Dublin) and Allison Russo (D-Upper Arlington) issued statements today after House Republicans voted to add an anti-vaccine provision to an unrelated bill, Senate Bill 111, legislation to direct $844 million in federal coronavirus relief to Ohio communities. The extreme amendment would prohibit public and private entities from requiring COVID-19 vaccines.
Here is what the Democratic lawmakers had to say:
“Vaccines work. They save lives. This amendment undermines public trust in the COVID vaccines. It prohibits common sense public health accommodations like hospitals asking non-vaccinated employees to work with less vulnerable patients, or businesses making social distancing accommodations that protect unvaccinated employees. We should not make laws that pander to extreme anti-vaccine groups at the expense of people’s lives,” said Rep. Liston.
“This last-minute, unvetted amendment is a dangerous overreach that undermines public health and makes us all less safe. It infringes upon the rights of private businesses to make the decisions that are best for them. This isn’t limited government. It’s a one-size-fits all mandate that will stoke vaccine hesitancy and keep us from reaching the vaccination level we need to put this virus behind us,” said Rep. Russo.