URGENT ACTION ALERT: Colorado Flu Vaccine Mandate for Healthcare Workers

Dear AAC Members,
Written comments opposition the proposed rule to force healthcare workers to take a flu shot need to be received by February 1st.   It would be great if everyone could send in comments to oppose this rule.  If you have questions, please contact your Colorado State Director, Cindy Loveland, at codirector@nvicadvocacy.org.

Sincerely,

Dawn Richardson, Director of Advocacy
National Vaccine Information Center
http://NVIC.org and http://NVICAdvocacy.org
Dawn@NVICAdvocacy.org

URGENT ACTION ALERT: Colorado Flu Vaccine Mandate for Healthcare Workers

1/20/2012

The Colorado Board of Health will have the final hearing and adoption of the new rule that mandates healthcare workers get an annual flu vaccine on Feb. 15, 2012.  There is NO religious or personal exemption in the current version of the rule.  Time is running out and comments must be received by Feb. 1st, 2012.

ACTION NEEDED NOW:

Send written comments addressed to the Colorado Board of Health before Feb. 1st, 2012 to the attention of Jamie Thornton and plan on attending the final hearing on Feb. 15th.

Jamie Thornton, Board Program Assistant
4300 Cherry Creek Dr. South
Denver, CO 80246-1530
Jamie.thornton@state.co.us
303-692-3464
303-691-7702 – fax

The official agenda will be posted on the health dept. web site here:
http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/bh/

MAIN POINTS TO MAKE:

1. Not allowing a declination for religious reasons is a civil rights violation, a human rights violation and eliminates a religious right that has been recognized in the state of Colorado for years.  There will be legal challenges to this rule that will be costly for the State of Colorado.

EEOC rules state religious exemptions must be allowed.  This rule violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Code and the ADA:
http://www.eeoc.gov/facts/pandemic_flu.html#36 see pint #13 in this EEOC Document.

Tell the board the rule must include an exemption or declination for religious reasons.  The state cannot define religion and they cannot discriminate based on religion., so the religious exemption cannot be tied to any particular religion.

2. This rule needs to go through the legislative process, not the rule-making process being used by the Board of Health.  The true stakeholders were not engaged in the drafting process.  No one was allowed to comment at public meetings where this issue was discussed.
An opposing view or comments were not allowed after the very biased presentation at the board meeting on Jan. 18th.  The regulatory analysis that was done, is inadequate and there has been no true cost/benefit analysis done.

http://www.nvic.org/PDFs/NVAC/NVPO-Flu-Vaccine-Public-Comment-docx.aspx
– read the NVIC comments concerning this issue being discussed at the national level.  This is an excellent, well referenced source of information.  This information applies, not only at the national level, but at the state level.

Tell the board to vote NO on this rule and send it to the legislature,
The legislature is the appropriate place for this matter  to be considered.  Elected officials who are accountable to the people are the ones who should be considering a rule that will effect so many people in Colorado, not appointed board members.

Mark your calendar for Feb. 15th and plan to attend the board meeting for the final hearing of this rule.  The board will allow public comments, however they may limit the time depending on how many people want to comment.  They may allow 5 minutes a person, or less than that.

Contact your local news station and local newspaper and ask them to cover this story.
Details of the meeting can be found here:

http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/bh/hearingnotices/6CCR1011-1ChIIPart10Influenza/Notice.pdf

The revised rule can be found here:

http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/bh/hearingnotices/6CCR1011-1ChIIPart10Influenza/ProposedAmendments.pdf

The Statement of Basis and Purpose, why they are doing this,  can be found here:

http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/bh/hearingnotices/6CCR1011-1ChIIPart10Influenza/StatementOfBasisAndPurpose.pdf

The so-called regulatory analysis, including the cost of this rule, can be found here:

http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/bh/hearingnotices/6CCR1011-1ChIIPart10Influenza/RegulatoryAnalysis.pdf

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