Virginia Commissioner of Health Dr. Norman Oliver will mandate COVID-19 vaccinations for all Virginians when the vaccine becomes available. Oliver has the authority under Virginia law to order immediate vaccinations during a health crisis.
Oliver says that, as long as he is still the Commissioner of Health when a vaccine is available, he intends on mandating it.
“It [the coronavirus] is killing people now, we don’t have a treatment for it and if we develop a vaccine that can prevent it from spreading in the community we will save hundreds and hundreds of lives,” Oliver said.
Under current state law, only people with a medical exemption could refuse the mandate.
The General Assembly is considering a bill that would allow religious exemptions from the mandatory vaccine but Oliver is strongly opposed to the bill.
Fortunately we have Delegate Dave LaRock who has introduced House Bill 5070 which would change the law so that that the Commissioner of Health cannot mandate vaccinations.