Texans for Vaccine Choice (TFVC) is calling on lawmakers to pass more medical freedom protections for Texans during the state’s 88th Legislative Session, which starts next week.

As Texans continue fighting for vaccine choice, the grassroots education and advocacy group is encouraging legislators to protect citizens’ right to informed consent and medical privacy. The organization is also drawing attention to “no shot, no school” campaigns, which prevented students from attending school if they did not receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Although vaccine choice is not an official Republican Party of Texas priority for the upcoming legislative session, the party’s platform includes measures calling for the state to prevent discrimination based on vaccination status and guarantee Texans’ right to information about their medical care.

To protect Texans from medical discrimination, TFVC is promoting legislation prohibiting vaccine mandates, requiring doctors to provide patients with a vaccine’s full ingredient list, and clarifying that participation in Texas’ ImmTrac vaccine database is optional.

Several Republican legislators, including State Sen. Charles Perry (R–Lubbock) and State Reps. Steve Toth (R–The Woodlands) and Candy Noble (R–Lucas) have already filed legislation to protect Texans from COVID-19 vaccine discrimination.

State Rep. Brian Harrison (R–Waxahachie) is also refiling his Texas COVID Vaccine Freedom Act, which would prevent any entity from coercing individuals to take the COVID-19 vaccine.

However, TFVC is calling on lawmakers to include other vaccines in their legislation.

“With well-articulated bills already filed to prohibit COVID-19 mandates or discrimination based on COVID-19 vaccination status, TFVC expects that Texans will be protected from government overreach specifically with regard to COVID-19 vaccinations,” said the organization. “However, these efforts need to extend to all vaccinations for all Texans if our legislators sincerely believe in medical liberty.”

After the Texas Senate’s Committee on Health and Human Services called for an end to COVID-19 mandates, TFVC said they were hopeful about momentum in the state Senate but placed responsibility with the Texas House.

“Particularly with the recent Senate Health and Human Services Committee report, we are optimistic that the Senate will easily pass measures to defend medical privacy and liberty,” the group told Texas Scorecard. “The onus will again be on the House to act swiftly, and the Governor has an opportunity to be a positive influence in this regard by prioritizing medical liberty in the 88th.”

Texas’ 88th Legislative Session begins on January 10.

Katy Marshall

Katy graduated from Tarleton State University in 2021 after majoring in history and minoring in political science.