Gov. Kelly is wrong about vaccine mandates on multiple counts

Politics is keeping her from making the right decision in safeguarding constituents' health

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Editorials

November 8, 2021 - 9:18 AM

KDHE secretary Lee Norman and Gov. Laura Kelly urge Kansans to get vaccinated following formal approval of the Pfizer vaccine by federal regulators. (SHERMAN SMITH/KANSAS REFLECTOR)

Here’s an experiment for Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly, who recently criticized vaccine mandates as strategies that “tend not to work” in Kansas: Cancel the state-issued mandates for school children to be vaccinated against mumps, measles and rubella.

Then, wait a couple of years and see if the percentage of vaccinated children in Kansas public schools has declined. Don’t kid yourself; school populations would be less vaccinated. Those mandates have been in place for decades, and they work.

Kelly knows that. She also knows that when it comes to COVID-19 vaccines, mandates work too. New York City firefighters, a group that has vocally opposed that city’s mandate, have seen vaccinations increase by 19 percentage points since the start of the mandate. Thousands last weekend alone got the shot, motivated by the mandate.

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