Los Angeles County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl urged educators and daycare operators Thursday to talk to parents and encourage them to get their children vaccinated against measles and other preventable diseases.

Kuehl also made a direct appeal to parents in her Westside-area Third District to vaccinate their kids.

“Unfortunately, the health of our community’s children has been needlessly jeopardized by too many parents who, for a variety of reasons, have chosen not to vaccinate their children, putting them — and everyone else’s children as well — at increased risk of entirely preventable infection,” Kuehl wrote in a letter to educators in her district.

“On the Westside in my district, for example, some private schools report levels of unvaccinated children ranging in as high as 68 percent — comparable, according to World Health Organization data, to that found in developing nations like Chad and South Sudan.”

In her letter, Kuehl asked educators to “contact every parent with whom you have a relationship and encourage them to choose vaccination for their children.”

The issue of childhood vaccinations has become a top concern in recent weeks given a measles outbreak that has now led to nearly 100 cases across California, with additional cases reported in other states. Many of the cases have been traced back to Disneyland, where patients reported visiting in mid- December.

Several state legislators have said they will introduce legislation that will eliminate the ability of parents in California to obtain “personal belief” exemption from vaccinations for their children.

City News Service

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