In the wake of the 2015 measles outbreak in California, California Senate Bill 277 (S.B. 277) was enacted. S.B. 277 repeals the personal belief exemption to California’s immunization requirement for children in public and private educational or child care facilities in the State. While S.B. 277 was enacted to prevent the spread of contagious diseases through mandatory vaccinations of school-aged children, there are objections to this approach. Parents who oppose S.B. 277 contend that S.B. 277 violates their federal and state constitutional rights to make medical decisions on behalf of their child, and infringes on their child’s fundamental state interest in education. This Article sets forth legal precedent for the notion that California may impose mandatory vaccination requirements without providing an exception for personal beliefs. The author concludes that such constitutional challenges to mandatory vaccination requirements are likely without merit.
Stephanie Awanyai, In Defense of California's Mandatory Child Vaccination Law: California Courts Should Not Depart From Established Precedent, 50 Loy. L.A. L. Rev. 391 (2017).