MEDIA RELASE: Center Calls on Governor Raimondo to Halt Controversial HPV Vaccine Mandate

July 30, 2015
Controversial Vaccine Mandated by Regulatory Fiat

Center Recommends Parents Claim a Religious Exemption to Maintain Rights
Calls on Governor to Delay the Mandate and Lawmakers to Overturn the Edict

Providence, RI — In a stunning revelation made public in a Providence Journal article yesterday, all Rhode Island 7th graders will be mandated to receive a controversial HPV vaccination that infringes on parental rights and has been subject of national scorn in recent years.

The Rhode Island Center for Freedom & Prosperity finds it even more troubling that Rhode Island will become just the second state to mandate the vaccine … and the only state to do so by regulatory fiat, without public debate, and without consideration from the elected representatives of the people.

“This growing trend of government by executive fiat and regulatory despotism bypasses the traditional democratic process and must cease. Like RhodeMap RI, why do we continue to allow unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats to arbitrarily make such important public policy decisions,” asked Mike Stenhouse, CEO for the Center. “Where are the voices of the Governor and our General Assembly, whose authority is being infringed upon by out-of-control bureaucratic ideologues? We call on the Governor to immediately halt this mandate in order to give lawmakers time to consider overturning this unprecedented edict.”

“Not only are the FDA approved vaccines for HPV relatively new and not vetted to the satisfaction of many in the medical community, they have been cited as the cause of many injuries, health complications and even death in some cases. Parents and the public have every right to be concerned about their children’s health,” said Gary D. Alexander, former Secretary of Health and Human Services for Rhode Island and adjunct scholar for health issues to the Center. “The state has not provided a proper public forum to discuss these concerns with parents. The implementation of this mandate must be delayed until a full public process has been conducted and all fears allayed.”

Also, a group of Rhode Island physicians that have been in contact with the Center do not believe an epidemic exists, especial one that should warrant such a drastic mandate; they further question whether the Gardasil vaccine is even effective. The doctors further claim that the potential side-effects of the vaccination include paralysis and death. The group cites that traditional pap smear tests are highly effective in diagnosing the human papillomavirus. The physicians also argue that the disease is not a public health issue in America, but rather a personal health issue, where parents – not the state government – should be making such important decisions about whether or not to have the vaccines administered to their children.

In 2011, then Texas governor and presidential candidate, Rick Perry, came under intense national criticism for issuing a similar executive order. Perry would later call his executive order a mistake, after the Texas legislature decided to overturn it.

The Center strongly recommends that any parent uncomfortable with this vaccine for their children should claim a ‘religious medical exemption’, which can be executed via a simple form that can be downloaded from the website.

Media Contact:
Mike Stenhouse, CEO
401.429.6115 |

About the Center
The nonpartisan RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity is Rhode Island’s premiere free-enterprise think tank. The mission of the 501c3 nonprofit organization is to return government to the people by opposing special-interest politics and advancing proven free-market solutions that can transform lives by restoring economic competitiveness, increasing educational opportunities, and protecting individual freedoms.

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