OHA denies petition to repeal ban over unvaccinated teachers, parents

By Oregon Moms Union,

Oregon Moms Union Petition to Repeal Ban on Unvaccinated Teachers, Staff, and Parents from Schools Denied by OHA

Salem, Ore., – Today, Oregon Moms Union, the state’s premiere nonpartisan education advocacy group, heard back from Oregon Health Authority (OHA) on a petition they filed on September 12, 2022 to repeal OAR 333-019-1030. This rule requires teachers, staff, and volunteers to be vaccinated. OHA refused to rescind the rule.

OHA cited the continued need for the rule because “being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 is one of the most effective ways to reduce the potential for severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19.”

However, the CDC does not differentiate between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals, so this rule continues to be out of line with the CDC.

“The CDC guidance changed and Oregon is still enforcing this outdated rule,” said MacKensey Pulliam, President and Co-Founder of the Oregon Moms Union. “Many parents are still being kept out of the classroom as volunteers as a result, and teachers were fired for not complying as recently as October in the Bend La Pine School District.”

OHA received about 1,200 public comments, 1,000 of which came from OMU’s advocacy network of parents opposing the rule. A few common themes were present in the comments, including concerns related to personal choice, shortages of school staff, natural immunity, and vaccine safety and efficacy.

“The arguments from OHA against this petition show that they continue to not listen to Oregonians or the science we’ve been told to follow for the last two years,” said Pulliam. “Our kids are facing two years of learning loss and need to be prioritized. This rule clearly shows OHA‘s lack of concern for students in Oregon.”

Oregon Moms Union, formed in early 2021 in the wake of COVID-19 school shutdowns and distance learning, seeks to empower parents to advocate for a student-first K-12 education system. It currently has more than 90 volunteer School District Captains serving in more than 75 school districts. Learn more at www.oregonmomsunion.com.