Anti-vaccine effort stumbles

Referendum to overturn vaccine bill falling short on signatures

The effort to overturn Senate Bill 277, which will require nearly all of California's schoolchildren to receive vaccinations before attending school, appears to be falling short.

SB 277, which is set to go into effect Jan. 1, eliminates California's personal belief exemption, thereby allowing only children who have received vaccinations for 10 diseases including whooping cough and measles—or those with medical exemptions—to enroll in public or private schools. Though the tally isn't final, a referendum to overturn the bill has gathered about 200,000 signatures, well short of the 365,880 required to bring the initiative to voters, according to The Sacramento Bee.

State Sen. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento), author of SB 277, released a statement saying that the referendum's apparent failure is “good news for public health and particularly California's children.”