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Sunday, June 15, 2008

Jersey Mothers Gather Forces Against Mandatory Vaccinations
By Susan Avedissian

Barbara Flynn speaks to mothers May 13 in West Cape May about her coalition lobbying legislators to create a conscientious objection to mandatory vaccines.

WEST CAPE MAY - When Melanie Gargiole of Court House entered Cape Regional Medical Center ready to give birth she had a birthing plan. That plan did not include her baby getting what, since 1999, has become a routine vaccination for Hepatitis B.

But she was groggy and the birth was difficult, and, as she describes it, she was verbally “attacked” by hospital personnel in an attempt to persuade her otherwise.

Gargiole was one of approximately 25 mothers, some from as far as Harleysville, Pa., who gathered at the Bella Vida Café here May 13 to learn more about two bills, Assembly Bill 260 and Senate Bill 1071 (A260/S1071), pending before the New Jersey Legislature which provide parents with a way to opt out of mandatory vaccinations by creating a conscientious exemption.
A new coalition has formed to support the bills, New Jersey Coalition for Vaccination Choice,

Mothers listened to Barbara Flynn, of Summit, speak about what her own group, C.H.E.R.U.B.S., which stands for Children Having Everybody Really Upset ‘Bout Shots, considers the dangers of vaccines.

Flynn has personal experience from which to draw. Eighteen years ago her older child suffered what she calls a classic case of “post-vaccinal encephalitis” and was diagnosed with serious “incurable” neurological disorders. He was eventually cured exclusively through natural healing therapies.

Flynn, married and the mother of two children aged 18 and 13 holds a BS in Math Education from Loyola University of Chicago and an MBA in Finance from Rutgers University. She is formerly an EDP (Electronic Data Processing) Auditor with Citibank and a Banking Consultant with the accounting firm of Peat, Marwick and Mitchell, both in New York City.
C.H.E.R.U.B.S. provides support for New Jersey parents filing religious exemptions to vaccinations, which the group claims anyone can assert. It was formed in 1999 as a support group for vaccine-injured New Jersey families seeking natural medical alternatives. The mission was expanded to help all NJ families realize informed consent, file religious and medical vaccination exemptions as provided by law and advocate for Conscientious Exemption legislation.

With a slate of new mandatory vaccinations slated for September, 2008, some families believe their rights to make choices for their family’s health are being trampled.

This was the first meeting in South Jersey, Flynn said, for her group, and she was pleased at the turnout.

See next week’s Herald for the full story.

For more information, see, or a newly formed coalition of organizations opposing mandatory vaccinations in New Jersey,

Contact Avedissian at (609) 886-8600 Ext 27 or at: .

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