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A protest in Sacramento is pushing back against vaccine mandates for students. Here's why.

Some parents from across California are planning to keep their kids home from school on Monday as part of the protest.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — On Monday, parents from across California are planning to push back against a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for students.

The protest is slated to take place along the west steps of the Capitol building, however, it is far from being the only one of its kind in recent times. Similar protests have been held in regard to healthcare workers, and, in Modesto, a protest against the vaccine mandate for students was held outside the Stanislaus County Office of Education earlier this month. 

The "Our Children, Our Choice!" protest on Monday comes in light of Governor Gavin Newsom mandating the COVID vaccine for eligible school children. 

“We’re fighting for the freedom to make the medical choices that are best for our children. We are fully prepared to pull our kids from public school and hire our own teaching staff if that’s what it takes. We do not co-parent with the government,” said Tess Van Dusen, an event organizer, in a news release.

Organizers are expecting roughly 3,000 parents, students, and teachers to attend.

“We want this to be a learning experience for our children because I feel like the days right now we’re living in, we’re kind of fighting for our freedoms. And its really important to me to teach my son that you do need to stand up for your liberties…,” said Amber Faddis, another event organizer.

With thousands expected at the Capitol, here's what you should know.

What are they protesting

According to Faddis and Van Dusen, the protest is in response to Gov. Newsom's vaccine mandate for schoolchildren. They said it was also tied to the freedom to make medical decisions for their children.

What to expect

State Assemblymember Kevin Kiley, founder of Kids & Country Rebecca Friedrichs, and Pastor Greg Fairrington of Destiny Church are lined up as speakers. 

The event is also calling on parents to keep their kids home from school on Oct. 18.

An inquiry to CHP regarding preparations for the event was not returned on Sunday. However, Sacramento Police Department said they'll have officers in the area to facilitate any road closures if needed. At this time, there are no planned closures.

School districts speak out

A handful of school districts have spoken out ahead of the planned protest, specifically in regard to parents possibly keeping children home from school. 

In a letter to parents, Summerville Union High School District said keeping children home from school "would only result in lost learning time for our students." They added that the district has no control over the mandate.

Twin Rivers Unified School District also spoke out in a letter to parents, urging them to keep their kids in school despite the protest.

"Please consider that for 18 long months, the pandemic prevented having our schools open for all students, but now they are back. Please let us continue to educate them, in school and in person," said Superintendent Steve Martinez in the letter. "They do not need to miss school for voices to be heard. If you have strong feelings against vaccination mandates, consider sending an email or video message to the Governor and writing a letter to your elected representatives."

What the governor is saying

In response to an inquiry from ABC10, the governor's office responded to the planned protest.

“The state already requires that students are vaccinated against a range of viruses such as measles, mumps, and rubella – there’s no reason why we wouldn’t do the same for COVID-19. This is about protecting our children and school staff and keeping them safely in the classroom. Vaccines work and are how we end the pandemic– full stop. It’s why California leads the country in preventing school closures and has the lowest case rates in the nation,” a spokesperson for the governor's office said.

When and where is the protest?

The "Our kids, Our Choice!" protest is planned for Oct. 18 between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. It'll take place on the west side of the Capitol Grounds.


According to Sacramento Police Department, no road closures are currently planned for the area.

To view traffic conditions, view the live traffic map from Waze below.


California Vaccine Mandate: Healthcare workers protest in Sacramento at the capitol building

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