The Hillsborough County Parent Alliance announced today that significant gains were made in reestablishing personal autonomy and medical privacy for parents and students in Hillsborough County, FL. Effective immediately, Hillsborough County Public Schools will no longer impose a mask mandate. Employees, students, faculty, visitors, and parents will have their right to healthcare privacy and freedom of medical choice reinstated with no fear of retaliatory actions due to opt-out disclosures or threats to their employment.
“Parents are responsible for their children’s health and welfare, rights, and education. We must have the freedom to make decisions that protect their best interests. These decisions are not best left with government officials. We, as parents and guardians in Hillsborough County, intend to retain the fundamental right to choose what is best for our children based on our family values,” says Kelly Carling, Hillsborough County Parent Alliance.
Governor DeSantis signed four bills that passed in a special legislative session on November 18, 2021. The bills protect the right and freedoms of Florida families, students, and employees to earn a living and make health decisions. Grave financial and allowable legal action will impact companies, school districts, and organizations that violate state laws.
• Both students and school district employees that have had COVID-19 exposure but are asymptomatic will not be forced to quarantine regardless of vaccine status. They will follow the guidelines from the Florida Department of Health.
• Florida parents will no longer agonize about the future possibility of a forced vaccine by the citizen-elected school board. The bill reinforces the “Parents’ Bill of Rights” to ban student mask and vaccination mandates in public schools.The COVID-19 annual vaccine will be treated in the same manner as the yearly flu shot – optional preventive measure parents can choose for their children.
• Privacy of medical history and medical choice is reestablished for Florida children. Schools may not create lists that identify and categorize students as vaccinated or unvaccinated for COVID-19 or lists that permit or omit the open access to face mask usage.
• Educational institutions, including the Florida College System, may not require COVID-19 vaccination as a condition of enrollment or attendance, granting access for academically qualified students regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status.
• Private sector workers now have expansive exemptions for injection mandates. Workers can avoid vaccination requirements by providing a medical or religious reason or presenting COVID-19 immunity. Government agencies are also barred from requiring workers to be vaccinated. The creation of new mandates is prohibited.
• The state health officer no longer has the long-standing power to vaccinate forcibly.
• Mask mandates are now banned in government-run buildings.
Governor DeSantis and the Florida Legislature has proven their ongoing commitment to reestablishing a unified pro-freedom government by signing four bills this week:
• HB – 1B – COVID-19 Mandate
• CS/HB 3B – Public Records
• HB 5B – Florida Occupational Safety and Health State Plan
• HB 7B – Vaccinations During Public Health Emergencies
About Hillsborough County Parent Alliance:
Hillsborough County Parent Alliance is a coalition of parents, guardians, and citizens that advocate for protecting parental rights.