Supervisor Nate Miley wants anti-vaxxers to have a choice

Alameda County supervisors approved a 
resolution favoring a controversial state
senate bill opposed by anti-vaxxers.

ALCO BOARD OF SUPERVISORS | If you squinted your eyes at Tuesday’s Alameda County Board of Supervisors meeting, you just might have mistaken Supervisor Nate Miley for a libertarian from the Central Valley.

Miley, who rarely shies away from a robust debate, opposed a board resolution supporting a State Senate bill (SB 277) by State Sen. Richard Pan that would remove the “personal belief” exemption from mandatory vaccinations. East Bay State Sen. Bob Wieckowski is a co-author.

“I think the government is intruding too much,” said Miley, who wondered why the issue was even before the board Tuesday morning.

Supervisor Nate Miley said a family member
is autistic due to vaccinations.

A groundswell of opposition from some parents against vaccinating their children for fears it causes ailments such as autism has grown in popular culture. The group is sometimes referred to as “anti-vaxxers.” Doctors, though, say there is no correlation between vaccinations and autism.

Miley also revealed a belief his nephew is autistic because of childhood vaccinations. Miley, though, said he was vaccinated long ago. “I’m not philosophically opposed to it, but I do think parents should have the ability to opt-out of it” said Miley. “But, I think this is too Draconian.”

Alameda County Supervisor Wilma Chan said she supports the senate bill and reiterated mandatory vaccinations have long been the law in the state and patients can still receive exemptions if a physician finds the vaccines will adversely affect the child’s health.

The Board of Supervisors ultimately approved support for the bill, currently in a state senate committee, 4-1, with Miley voting no.

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