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Legislation On COVID-19 Vaccines Being Debated In Louisiana

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Legislation On COVID-19 Vaccines Being Debated In Louisiana

(CTN News) – Louisiana continues to debate vaccination mandate policies, three years after COVID-19 vaccines became widely available. One thing that’s up for debate is civil rights if you work at a workplace that requires vaccinations or if schools don’t have to.

Current debates, which are often marred by anti-vaccination rhetoric, occur as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention relax guidelines and COVID-19 ceases to be a threat to public health. During this legislative session, Louisiana lawmakers have also discussed “experimental or emergency use vaccinations” for fear of future pandemics.

Republican-controlled House passed a bill Wednesday to protect businesses from lawsuits because they don’t mandate “experimental or emergency use vaccines” like COVID-19. A person wouldn’t be able to file a lawsuit against a business if they got sick from their contact with it.

The bill’s author, Rep. Danny McCormick, said it would “do away with frivolous lawsuits.” McCormick said it would be difficult to prove where or from whom someone contracted COVID-19. Denise Marcelle, a Democratic Rep. who opposes the bill, said that while that’s true, McCormick’s bill wouldn’t even give people the chance to get there.

Legislation passed mostly along party lines and now heads to the Senate. An alternative bill that would let people who “suffer from vaccine injuries” sue their employer or school if they are forced to get a COVID-19 vaccine was rejected in a narrow vote.

Several of his constituents have died or been maimed by the COVID-19 vaccines, says Louisiana GOP Rep. Mike Echols, who authored the bill. Many conspiracy theorists and anti-vaccine activists have incorrectly and baselessly blamed COVID-19 shots for the injuries and deaths of hundreds of children, teens, athletes, and celebrities. COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective, and there have been hundreds of millions of shots administered to prove it.

In response to the bill’s passage, a powerful lobbying group representing business interests opposes it, claiming it will harm workers compensation’s long-held purposes.

Representative Echols plans to reintroduce the measure in another attempt, but it failed 51-50. In addition, the GOP-dominated legislature will consider a measure that prohibits schools from requiring students to receive COVID-19 vaccinations.

Last year, nearly identical legislation was easily passed by the legislature, but the then-Governor vetoed it. The Democratic candidate is John Bel Edwards. The conservative governor Jeff Landry has taken office since then.

According to Edwards, the vaccine is not mandatory in the state, so the bill is “unnecessary”. Additionally, Edwards said the measure undermines public confidence in the COVID-19 vaccines.

As COVID-19 vaccines are widely used beginning in 2021, arguments in Louisiana’s capitol echo those across the country. Vaccines have played a key role in reducing the incidence of serious disease and death caused by COVID-19.


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Alishba Waris is an independent journalist working for CTN News. She brings a wealth of experience and a keen eye for detail to her reporting. With a knack for uncovering the truth, Waris isn't afraid to ask tough questions and hold those in power accountable. Her writing is clear, concise, and cuts through the noise, delivering the facts readers need to stay informed. Waris's dedication to ethical journalism shines through in her hard-hitting yet fair coverage of important issues.

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