by Brittany Ruiz
Portland Tribune


Last fall, when an exhausted new mom wanted time to consider vaccinations for her newborn, the infant was taken from her by the on-call pediatrician at a Portland hospital, who claimed “medical negligence.”

A caseworker from the state Department of Human Services, without a judicial review, had the child removed and allowed the attending nurse to vaccinate the child “with whatever they wanted to give” against the parents’ permission.

This happened even though Oregon allows parents to opt out of vaccinations. The mother was allowed to see her baby only for the purpose of nursing her and then escorted out of the hospital by police.

Throughout this illegal nightmare, a DHS caseworker falsified reports and placed numerous roadblocks in the way of this family wanting to parent their newborn.

Despite this, many Oregon families came forward to help them. With the aid of attorneys who offered to represent the family pro bono, the case was dismissed, with DHS conceding the woman was an excellent mother.

Some months later, this mother and I had a meeting with U.S. Rep Suzanne Bonamici, D-Beaverton, and with the help of attorney Bob Snee, we set out to amend the state law.

State Sen. Brian Boquist, R-Dallas, introduced legislation on our behalf that would clarify that refusing or delaying vaccinations of a child does not constitute abuse.

While the bill did not pass, state Sen. Sara Gelser, D-Corvallis, helped ensure that DHS issued a statewide memo to inform caseworkers that refusal or delaying vaccinations alone does not constitute abuse.

Read the full article at the Portland Tribune.