In the wake of the outbreak in the Vancouver area, emotions ran high as parents battled the state over whether their kids should be forced to get the measles vaccine.
Lawmakers are battling the question of whether parents should be forced to have their kids vaccinated even if they personally don't believe it's safe. Right now they have that choice, but that exemption could soon be taken away under a senate bill (SB 5841).
"We need you to say 'no more,' " was the chant at the state capitol demonstration Wednesday. They came for a fight for what parents believe is their right to not have their kids vaccinated against measles, mumps and rubella with the MMR vaccine.
"Yes, because I think it's totally against who we are as a people, as a country," said parent Janell Nunez. "Why should we forced in something we have no say in?"
These moms and dads said the recent outbreak of measles in Clark county has sparked an over reaction in the state legislature.
"This is a serious health threat," said the bill's sponsor Sen. Annette Cleveland at a packed hearing. The outbreak is in her district.
There were assurances that the vaccines are safe.
"The bottom line is, this is preventable and it's preventable with our highly safe and effective vaccines," said state Health Secretary Dr. John Wiesman."
"The science is very clear," said Dr. Gary Goldbaum of the Washington State Medical Association. "These vaccines are safe and effective."
"I've read the science and it's not there," said Del Bigtree. He produced the film "Vaxxed," which he said ignited this outrage and fear of the vaccines. "The facts are this. It's the only product made by the pharmaceutical industry that's never been through a placebo study. All 16 vaccines have never been proven safe using the scientific method."
For parent Shawna Robinson she believes her sons are paying the price for taking the vaccine. "My kids developed allergic reactions right after the vaccine," she said. "They had fevers. They were sick continually. My older son started getting migraine headaches really shortly after the MMR."
There still would be exemptions for religious or medical reasons.
The senate committee now will take the testimony and vote on the bill over the next week and a half. A similar bill is making it's way through the House (HB 1638).