Many people have asked me to comment on a post raising 11 reasons (I think that’s the number) why SB 276 is illegal. I glanced at it quickly. Although I acknowledge and appreciate the effort, most or all of the points and discussion is recyled from arguments raised and rejected in prior court cases.
There were at least four challenges to SB 277 in state and federal courts, all of which were rejected. The lawyers who challenged SB 277 were smart, articulate, wrote very good papers and raised every conceivable issue, and they all lost. Here are three of the SB 277 decisions.
Here is a family law case in which the religious right to oppose mandatory vaccination was rejected. Price v. Price (In re Marriage of Price) (Cal. App., 2019)
Here is a West Virginia federal case which you should read because it involves a physician written medical exemption rejected by school authorities.
(Spoiler alert: The court of appeals upheld the rejection, and rejected the religious argument as well). This case will be cited and discussed in detail by the Attorney General’s Office in every forthcoming SB 276 legal challenge.
If you read these decisions, you will get a better understanding of the law and how judges think (primarily relying on the limbic parts of their brains). Caution, it will depress and/or anger you.
I have addressed the discrimination argument against mandatory vaccination in a prior post. Here it is: http://rickjaffeesq.com/2019/05/24/sorry-cali-vaccine-concerned-but-i-dont-think-medical-discrimination-is-a-valid-basis-to-challenge-sb-276/
The short of it is that it’s a non-starter.
Neither HIPAA nor FERPA provide a private right of action for a state government agencies violation of these federal statutorily created rights.
While it is true that appellate courts sometimes change the law, for reasons which I stated many times, in the vaccine context, it is really an uphill battle.
That being said, SB 276 involves medical exemptions, not personal belief and religious exemptions. To me that means that a successful challenge cannot focus on the usual suspects, i.e., claims like substantive due process, education rights, religious choice, medical freedom, but something different. So, keep up the thinking and interacting about these issues, and maybe one of you will come up with something that might work.
Rick Jaffe, Esq.