Note: HB 1029 was postponed indefinitely in House Health & Insurance Committee on February 7, 2023. The following is the CCC’s testimony in support of the bill
HB23-1029 prohibits administration of a COVID-19 vaccine to a minor without parental consent and prohibits discrimination of a minor based on their vaccine status for their participation in extracurricular activities, nonpublic home-based education, or any other form of discrimination from a public or private entity. This includes a public or private entity levying a fee, fine, or tax based on the minor or parent/guardian’s vaccination status. It also provides recourse against an entity that violates this prohibition.
The Catholic Church in Colorado supports the freedom of conscience of each individual person to choose whether or not to be vaccinated and to not be discriminated against for that personal and private decision. Parents are the primary decision-maker in decisions related to their children — including whether or not their child is vaccinated. This bill ensures that the rights of parents are not infringed upon and children are not discriminated against in their participation in public or private extracurricular activities because of their COVID-19 vaccination status. Whether or not a child receives a COVID-19 vaccination should not be the basis for their participation in extracurricular activities.
The Bishops of Colorado have been firm and consistent in their stance that, while certain COVID-19 vaccines are morally acceptable to receive, the conscience rights of individuals must be protected from coercive action to vaccinate. The state legislature should act to protect the right of parents to make the vaccination decision for their children without fear that their children will face discrimination due to their vaccination status.
This bill respects parental rights and upholds the parents’ responsibility as the primary care-taker for their children. The Colorado Catholic Conference urges a yes vote.