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CT Voters Overwhelming Agree: Vaccines are Critical to Public Health and Should Be Required for School and Daycare Attendance

July 16, 2020 – The best way to stop the spread of disease is through vaccination and parents have a responsibility to ensure that their children are vaccinated before entering schools and daycares to protect public health —these are just some of the statements that Connecticut residents overwhelmingly support according to a just released poll of registered voters.

Residents strongly support changing current law so that parents can only exempt their children from vaccination requirements for medical reasons in order to be allowed to attend schools and daycares in the state.  CT is one of several states seeking to remove personal beliefs and religious reasons for exemptions to required vaccines for school and daycares in the state.

The poll was conducted by Lake Research Partners during the week of June 9-16 on behalf of Vaccinate Your Family, a nonprofit, non-partisan vaccine advocacy organization, based in Washington, D.C. and Connecticut.  The polling found overwhelming support for vaccinations to protect children in schools and daycares throughout  Connecticut.

The poll comes at a time when school districts across the state are grappling with how to re-start in person learning following school shutdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The online poll included a representative sampling of 600 registered voters from across the state, that included all genders, religious beliefs and  political party affiliations as well as an oversampling of Black and Latinx populations.  Highlights include:

  • Nearly nine out of ten parents in Connecticut believe children should be required to receive vaccines with nearly 75% in strong agreement.
  • 87% of adults statewide and across party lines agree that children should be required to receive recommended vaccines against diseases in order to be enrolled in schools and daycares.
  • 65% of adults (42% strongly) support proposed legislation in the Connecticut General Assembly that would ONLY allow parents to opt their children out of daycare and school vaccine requirements for medical reasons.

“Despite the loud voices of a vocal minority, the evidence is clear, Connecticut parents want their kids to be protected from preventable diseases, and vaccines are the best way to do that,” said Amy Pisani, Executive Director of Vaccinate Your Family,  a Connecticut resident and mom.  “Now more than ever we need to ensure the loopholes that have allowed the vaccination rates among kids in our state to drop are closed, and passing legislation to require vaccinations for daycare and schools is how we will achieve that.  As a parent in Connecticut, this is deeply personal to me and I am thrilled, but not surprised to see that the majority of parents in the state want to see this legislation passed.”

“Vaccines are the greatest and most effective way to protect our kids from preventable diseases.  From birth to college, kids should be immunized to maximize their health,” said Erin Jones, Legislative and Strategic Counsel at March of Dimes.  “If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s the value of disease prevention. Requiring childhood immunization from preventable diseases is our obligation to them and the greater public’s health.”

Due to the overwhelming response by Connecticut voters, lawmakers should prioritize legislation to remove the non-medical exemption and consider passing the legislation in an upcoming special session.

Vaccinate Your Family (VYF) was originally founded in 1991 by Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter and Former First Lady of Arkansas Betty Bumpers. Based in Washington, DC our mission is to protect people of all ages from vaccine-preventable diseases by: raising awareness of the critical need for timely immunizations, increasing the public’s understanding of the benefits of vaccines, increasing confidence in the safety of vaccines, ensuring that all families have access to lifesaving vaccines, and advocating for policies that support timely vaccination.

Executive Director, Amy Pisani a long-time resident of Connecticut and is a member of the Vaccination Alliance of CT and CT Citizens for Science.

Poll Methodology: Lake Research Partners was hired by Vaccinate Your Family to design and administer this survey that was conducted online from June 9 – 16, 2020. The survey reached a total of 600 adults in Connecticut and oversamples of 75 African American and 100 Latinx adults. The sample of respondents was drawn from an online panel.  The base sample was weighted by gender, region, age, race, party identification, and race by gender. The African American oversample was weighted by gender, age, and party identification. The Latinx oversample was weighted by gender, region, age, and party identification. The oversamples were weighted down into the base to reflect their proportion of the overall population. The base and the oversamples were weighted to reflect their actual proportion of the Connecticut statewide population.

The margin of error for the base is +/-4.0%. The margin of error for the oversamples and subgroups is higher.

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