Herd or community immunity is not achieved through vaccination.

I moved to the state of Oregon over 5 years ago, and up until now parents could opt out of vaccinations for school aged children for non-medical or medical reasons through the Oregon Health Authority. Even though I don’t have children, this was one of the reasons I chose to live here. I wanted to live in a state that offered medical freedom.

Fast forward to today and as of this writing we’ve had 4 cases of measles reported in our state this year. Unfortunately, Oregon is following in the wake of a number of states that are pushing through legislation to mandate vaccinations for school aged children, including Washington next to us. Oregon’s House Bill 3063 removes a parent’s ability to decline required immunizations on behalf of child for any reason other than child’s indicated medical diagnosis. It also directs the Oregon Health Authority to establish an outreach and education plan regarding disease control in schools. It declares this bill to be an emergency, that will be effective on passage.

I have a difference of opinion about what constitutes an emergency, as I’ve written about in our approach to measles article. The legislature’s sense of urgency is based on what I would describe as the false notion that we can achieve herd or community immunity via mandated vaccinations. They only offered us 3 days notice to testify publicly for 90 seconds each at the State Capitol in Salem. I will be there!  Meanwhile, below is the letter I sent to all the representatives on the committee which I named and emailed one at a time, as encouraged by the Oregonians for Medical Freedom organization that I support:

Dear Representatives,

I live here in Portland, Oregon and lead an educational initiative called Nourishing Our Children. We are a project of The Weston A. Price Foundation, a non-profit organization. We advocate for wise traditions in food, farming and the healing arts, which would include non-toxic therapies. We have close to 80,000 who have liked Nourishing Our Children’s Facebook page, and the majority of us are opposed to mandated vaccination in any state.

I am deeply concerned about House Bill 3063 that is being proposed, and clearly fast tracked for a public hearing this week. One of the reasons I chose to move to Oregon, from California, was because this state offered the freedom of choice to vaccinate or not.

The incentive to mandate that parents vaccinate their children is based on the notion of herd or community immunity. Please read this article from Tetyana Obukhanych, PhD, who illustrates that community immunity can not be achieved through vaccination. It is a faulty theory.  Also, from a fellow Portlander, JB Handley who is the author of the book How to End The Autism Epidemic and Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Children’s Health Defense: Herd Immunity: A Dishonest Marketing Gimmick.

I can understand that it may be tempting to dismiss those of us who will reach out to you this week protesting House Bill 3063 as merely a fringe “anti-vax” group. Our desire to keep vaccination a choice is based on scientific research. We too care deeply about the health of all children, and have concluded that compulsory vaccination will not contribute to the health or safety of those who do choose to vaccinate. As toxicologist Ashley Everly explains in her detailed report, MMR vaccination rates over 99% do not prevent outbreaks of measles.  

In fact, during the first half of 2016, more than 40 students at Harvard University contracted mumps. Each of the students had received the required two doses of the MMR vaccine and were, theoretically, immune to measles, mumps, and rubella. The vaccine didn’t protect them. There was no herd immunity, and there can be none with vaccines because they do not provide the same kind of true immunity that is provided by a natural infection.  

There were similar mumps outbreaks among vaccinated students in college campuses throughout the United States in 2016, including the University of Missouri, Pennsylvania State University, Boston University, MIT, Sacred Heart University, and others.

The theory of herd immunity may have been valid under the old model of natural immunity—the notion that if you contracted an infectious disease like pertussis, measles or chickenpox, then you would be immune to that disease for the rest of your life. However, the theory is not valid under the current paradigm of vaccine-induced immunity because that sort of “immunity” is temporary, at best—it doesn’t provide life-long protection from disease. That is a well-known fact, and the reason that the CDC includes “boosters” in its schedule.

I do trust that we share the same desire for the safety of our children, and ask that you consider that the impetus to mandate vaccination is based on a fundamentally flawed theory. 


Sandrine Perez
Executive and Creative Director
Nourishing Our Children

What I didn’t include in my letter, due to my desire to be relatively concise, is a few more articles that focus on the fallacy of herd immunity through vaccinations: 

False Premise of Medical Herd Immunity Drives Vaccination
Challenging What You’ve Heard about the Herd
Herd Immunity: A False Rationale for Vaccine Mandates
Herd Immunity Theory Has Been Repeatedly Disproven

What is the current status of vaccinations where you live? Are your religious or personal exemptions threatened yet?