Contact: Stacey Holliday, Concerned Women for America, 202-488-7000 ext. 126
WASHINGTON, Feb. 5 /Christian Newswire/ -- In an extreme executive order that circumvents parents and the Texas legislature, Governor Rick Perry (R-Texas) has mandated that before entering the 6th grade girls must receive the HPV vaccine, a shot that prevents sexually active girls from becoming infected with an STD linked to cervical cancer. Concerned Women for America (CWA) believes that it is the right and responsibility of parents--not government--to choose whether or not their daughter receives the vaccination.
The flu virus kills over 60,000 people every year in the United States, as opposed to cervical cancer, which accounts for 4,000 deaths annually. The flu vaccination, which would statistically save 15 times more lives than the HPV vaccine, is not required. The HPV vaccine should be optional as well.
CWA President Wendy Wright said, "The Governor's order forces little girls to be shot with a sex virus vaccine. He has circumvented debate on this controversial matter to the financial benefit of Merck, one of his campaign contributors. An opt-out provision puts parents in the position of having to resist forceful government officials, and puts the burden on parents when it should be on the vaccine maker.
"While we support the vaccine itself, a government mandate that little girls must be shot with it well before they're sexually active, with the likely consequence they would have to get another expensive booster before they're sexually active, is an outrageous assault on girls and their parents."
"Educate parents about all the risks of HPV and the vaccine. Enable parents in lower economic levels to have the vaccine available with government funding," said Anne Hettinger of Concerned Women for America of Texas. "But the Governor of Texas has gone far beyond that. With the stroke of his pen, parents have been coerced into compliance unless they can convince the bureaucracy otherwise. The burden of proof should not be on parents."
Concerned Women for America is the nation's largest public policy women's organization.