RALEIGH — A bill that would block K-12 and college students from being required to have a COVID-19 vaccination shot in order to attend school passed the House on April 26.
The bill passed mainly down party lines by a vote of 73-41. Three Democrats voted to pass the measure; Amber Baker (Forsyth), Garland Pierce (Scotland), and Michael Wray (Northampton).
House Bill 98, titled the “Medical Freedom Act,” would prohibit any state and local government agency or political subdivision of the state from issuing COVID-19 requirements or requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination records of any person or discriminating against anyone refusing to provide proof of such a vaccination when applying for employment.
Senate Bill 121, also filed in February, is a companion bill to House Bill 98.
Under the bill, the N.C. Commission for Public Health is prohibited from requiring the vaccination or proof of a vaccination for K-12 and college students to attend school in the state.
The measure would also block state and local governments from placing vaccine requirements on private citizens and public employees.
The bill was filed in mid-February by Rep. Brian Biggs (R-Randolph) and co-sponsored by Reps. Jon Hardister (R-Guilford), Neal Jackson (R-Moore), and Donny Lambeth (R-Forsyth).
Language barring schools from masking children was dropped from the bill in February.