Controversy warning! Actress and mom-of-one Jessica Biel joined forces with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., an environmental activist, at the recent California State Assembly to lobby against a vaccination bill, Now, the internet has branded Jessica Biel an anti-vaxxer.
The California state bill, called SB 276, would limit medical exemptions from vaccines without approval from a state public health officer. Anti-vaxx advocates like Robert F. Kennedy Jr. have been outspoken about how strongly they oppose this bill, citing that it would reduce medical exemptions by nearly 40 percent.
Those who are pro-vaccination pushed back, saying that the bill will actually have minimal impact on those with valid reasons for exemption. The bill is co-sponsored by the California Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics, California.
The Limetown star posted her mission on Instagram. “This week I went to Sacramento to talk to legislators in California about a proposed bill,” Jessica begins her caption, which was posted after the initial backlash began. “I am not against vaccinations — I support children getting vaccinations and I also support families having the right to make educated medical decisions for their children alongside their physicians. My concern with #SB276 is solely regarding medical exemptions. My dearest friends have a child with a medical condition that warrants an exemption from vaccinations, and should this bill pass, it would greatly affect their family’s ability to care for their child in this state.”
“That’s why I spoke to legislators and argued against this bill,” Jessica continues. “Not because I don’t believe in vaccinations, but because I believe in giving doctors and the families they treat the ability to decide what’s best for their patients and the ability to provide that treatment. I encourage everyone to read more on this issue and to learn about the intricacies of #SB276. Thank you to everyone who met with me this week to engage in this important discussion!”
Despite Jessica’s protestations that she is not an anti-vaxxer, her involvement with this bill has angered many on the internet. A reporter for Jezebel even says that Jessica refused the prescribed vaccination schedule for her own son, four-year-old Silas, whom she shares with husband Justin Timberlake.
Jessica’s Twitter, where she is promoting her new Facebook Watch show Limetown, is also inundated with comments from critics:
What do you think? Is Jessica Biel an anti-vaxxer? Was her involvement taken out of context?
Katie Nave Freeman is freelance writer, producer, and mama living in Brooklyn, New York. Driven by her passion for storytelling, she is always seeking opportunities to elevate people who are working to better the world around them.