09/24/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 09/24/2021 09:38
Fueled by cruelty and disinformation, Florida Republicans, led by state senator Manny Diaz Jr., have announced they will be conducting a "review" of school vaccine requirements that have been keeping students, teachers, and school personnel safe for over 40 years.
That begs the question: do Carlos Giménez and María Elvira Salazar, who represent the fourth-largest school district in the country, agree with the Florida GOP taking destructive aim at public health standards in our schools?
Modern school vaccine requirements have been in place since 1977, supported by successive Democratic and Republican administrations.
And in 2019, just before the pandemic, we saw the importance of these childhood immunizations as Florida faced a serious measles outbreak.
According to a CDC analysis of school vaccine requirements over the last 50 years, "immunization has led to elimination or near elimination of several vaccine-preventable diseases in the United States and has substantially reduced deaths, disabilities, and illness."
Last month, as Gov. Ron DeSantis was threatening to defund schools over mask mandates, Giménez and Salazar suddenly found themselves tongue-tied, with Gimenez offering the pitiful response that Republican attacks on schools are "a state issue."
Last we checked, FL-26 is in the State of Florida. And as mayor of Miami-Dade, Carlos Giménez had no problem meddling in state issues.
Instead of offering cowardly, cop-out answers, Carlos Giménez and Maria Elvira Salazar should answer clearly whether they stand with decades of proven science or yet another Republican attack on public health.
"Carlos Giménez and Maria Elvira Salazar are 0/2 in standing up for children, teachers and schools in South Florida," said DCCC Spokesperson Abel Iraola. "First they said nothing as Ron DeSantis relentlessly attacked and tried to defund schools, and now they continue to stay silent as Republicans threaten to upend almost half a century of safe and successful childhood immunizations."