by John Gilmore – Long Beach, NY

NYS Capitol

Awesome Beginning to the NY Legislative Session

January 8 — What an awesome day in Albany! Workers at the state buildings said ours was the biggest and LOUDEST group to ever show up for the opening of the Legislative Session.

Well over a thousand people showed and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., warrior mom Brooke Jordan, Rabbi Zev Epstein, Mary Holland, co-author of HPV Vaccine On Trial, and Assembly member David DiPietro presented moving speeches to us in the Capitol. One consistent message came from the legislators who are on our side: Keep it up!

We began our day in front of Merck’s Albany headquarters, just half a block from the Capitol, for a reason. All the vaccine bills we are fighting in New York are there to make money for Merck, Pfizer, Sanofi & Glaxo, the big four drug companies that sell almost 90% of the vaccines in the world. As US Representative Ilhan Omar said, “It’s all about the Benjamins.”

Merck is a serial felon. They have paid more than $10 billion in fines, penalties and settlements since 2000 including more than $5 billion for at least 60,000 deaths caused by their Vioxx product. And $350 million for bribing public officials and doctors!

Gardasil is the most controversial vaccine in the world. It was banned in Japan for safety reasons. There are lawsuits around the world in those countries that allow lawsuits against vaccine injuries, which does not include the US. It has a horrendous safety record and there is a growing body of evidence that much of the data Merck used to get the product license was fraudulent.

Three of the four bills we are fighting the hardest against would give Merck direct access to our kids and shut parents out completely. They are:

S298b/A2912a, Mandates Merck’s Gardasil to attend school. Think about that, the state is forcing people to buy Merck’s product, which is already a monopoly, and if any child is injured by Gardasil, Merck has complete liability protection. Three states have Gardasil mandates, all three allow parents to opt out for any reason, but not New York’s bill.

S3899a/A973a, Allows giving drugs and vaccines that are marketed as preventing sexually transmitted diseases to minors without parental knowledge or consent. No lower age limits are in the bill.

S4244c/A6564c, Allows any vaccine to be given to children 14 and older without parental knowledge or consent. Any child in school has to have all the mandated vaccines, so this bill is clearly doing two things: targeting home-schooled kids, and promoting Gardasil which is not required to attend school.

S2276/A2316, Mandates annual flu shots for daycare, Pre-K, k-12. This isn’t a Merck specific bill but they sell flu vaccines too.

We need to keep the pressure up. The following people are the key players in the legislature. Please call them and politely ask what their positions are on the bills above and let them know that you oppose all the bills.

Governor Andrew Cuomo, (518) 474-8390

Jay Jacobs, Chair of the NY Democratic party, the NY Democrats do not publish a telephone number. The number is for the Nassau Democrats which Jacobs has led for many years (516) 294-3366

Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart- Cousins, (518) 455-2585

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, (518) 455-3791

Assembly Majority Leader Crystal Peoples-Stokes, (518) 455-5005

Senator Michael Gianaris, (518) 455-3486

Senator Gustavo Rivera, Senate Health Committee Chair, (518) 455-3395

Assembly-member Richard Gottfried, Health Committee Chair, (518) 455-4941

Please share this message with friends and family, and on social media while we still can.

John Gilmore is the executive director of the Autism Action Network, a national 501c4 advocacy organization, working on a range of issues that impact individuals and families affected by autism. He lives with
his wife and two sons. His son, Luke has an autism diagnosis, among other health conditions and developmental delays, as a result of vaccine-induced encephalitis as an infant.

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