If you?re not already aware of it, I think you?ll be pleased to know
that in April of 2003, as a result of Federal courts striking down the
current law as unconstitutional, the Arkansas Legislature passed a law
called Act 999 of 2003, which amended the existing law in such a way
as to allow a parent to legally refuse mandatory vaccinations for a
minor child not only on medical or religious grounds, but also on the
grounds of philosophical/personal belief. Therefore, although it?s
going to take some legwork and tenacity on your part, you do now have
an official avenue for obtaining an exemption for your son to be
admitted to/attend the University of Arkansas without submitting to
the standard mandatory immunization requirement, or having to get a
doctor?s or minister?s signature.
First of all, I?m going to be giving you links to a number of .pdf
documents, which require Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to view, so if
you don?t already have it, please go here to get a copy:
UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS REQUIREMENTS
From the University of Arkansas Application Booklet:
?Once admitted, all students, including transfer students, must return
the immunization form (proof of immunization against measles and
rubella is required by Arkansas state law prior to the registration of
classes for students born after January 1, 1957). Additional details
on-line at http://health.uark.edu .
Mail the completed form with documentation to:
University Health Center, 600 Razorback Road, Fayetteville, AR 72701.?
From University of Arkansas Health Center/Health Services --
?Immunizations that are REQUIRED:
Measles and Rubella.
Upon admission, all students born after January 1, 1957, must show
proof of immunization for Measles and Rubella. All students receive
the Immunization Form with the Notification of Admission.?
Following this is a section on possible additional recommended
immunizations. I encourage you to read it all for yourself, here:
In addition, if you have any questions about other immunizations than
the MMR, you might give Health Services a call just to check. They
don?t use email for sending/receiving information due to its insecure
nature, but their number for medical records is 479-575-4078, or you
can check the contact page, here:
I haven?t been able to find any place where you can find/download this
UARK form online, so it looks like you?ll need to wait to receive it
with your son?s Notification of Admission packet, if you haven?t
already. Then, in order for your son to be able to register for
classes without having the required immunizations, you?ll need to
submit this form, together with a certificate of exemption from the
Arkansas Department of Health, (which is the only place that can issue
CERTIFICATE OF EXEMPTION
Here?s the scoop on the certificate of exemption. In order to get
one, the amended law requires:
?SECTION IV. EXEMPTIONS.
A. General Requirements.
1. With the exception of medical exemptions for college and university students,
exemptions shall be granted only by the Department of Health.
2. Individuals shall complete an annual application for medical, religious, and
3. A notarized statement by the individual requesting the exemption must
accompany the application.
4. All individuals requesting an exemption must complete an educational component
developed by the Department of Health that includes information on the risks and
benefits of vaccinations.
5. All individuals must sign an ?informed consent? form provided by the
Department of Health that includes:
a) A statement of refusal to vaccinate;
b) A statement of understanding that at the discretion of the Department of
Health the non-immunized child or individual may be removed from the
applicable facility during an outbreak if the child or individual is not fully
c) A statement of understanding that the child or individual shall not return to
the applicable facility until the outbreak has been resolved and the
Department of Health approves the return.?
From ?Arkansas State Board of Health: RULES AND REGULATIONS PERTAINING
TO IMMUNIZATION REQUIREMENTS?
PLAIN ENGLISH TRANSLATION:
- You can ONLY get the exemption certificate from the Arkansas DHHS.
- You must personally request the ?Refusal to Vaccinate? form from
DHHS. They also do not make their form available online for download.
You will have to call or visit to request one. The phone number is
501-661-2169. The address is: 4815 West Markham #48; Little Rock, AR
- You must submit/get a new application/exemption certificate every year.
- You must submit with your application a notarized statement
requesting an exemption, stating the grounds for the request.
- You must complete an educational component determined by the state.
This is likely to be reading material that is included with the
application packet, from either the state, the CDC, or both on the
benefits and risks of vaccinations.
- You must sign an ?informed consent? form from the state, which says
you have read all the materials, understand them, and still refuse to
vaccinate your child.
- You must sign an additional statement indicating your understanding
that the state still has the power to refuse to allow your child to
attend classes in the event there is an outbreak of what they
determine to be a ?vaccine preventable? disease, such as measles, and
that, if your child is barred from attendance for such a cause, he
must have the permission of the Dept. of Health before being allowed
- Failure to do any of the above could result in the state?s refusal
to issue the exemption certificate.
It?s probably no surprise to you that you?re far from the only person
who objects to immunizations. An Idaho organization called
?Vaccination Liberation? has a very comprehensive website dedicated to
assisting people in your position. Their site has a section on
Arkansas that I strongly encourage you to read, as there is a great
deal of specific information there from the ?Arkansas Health Freedom
Coalition? that could be of significant help to you. In particular,
scroll down to the section on colleges and universities. It?s quite
near the bottom.
Also, please note the section (a little more than halfway down) which
talks about these ?informed consent? forms. It says in part,
?Wanted to give you all a heads up on state issued exemption forms. I
... always crossed out sentences or clauses, and often adding some of
my own, before signing their exemption of medical release type of
forms.... After having a "closer encounter" with such a form - ... I
was shocked into the VERY REAL danger of signing these forms without
changing them significantly....
?....Any form one affixes their initials to, dates and affixes their
signature to at the end is a LEGAL document. All statements prior to
your signature you must agree to fully OR restrict your signature to
say that you are signing under TDC - threat, duress, and coercion....?
?... Basically, by initialing and signing this form as is, you are
admitting to understanding that "vaccine preventable" diseases are
extremely deadly and ALSO admitting to negligence for willfully
denying your son/daughter the life saving protection that vaccines
offer. These forms are MEANT to not only be intimidating but to catch
the legally ignorant off guard.
?...I would insist that they accept a form that I provide them since
it satisfies the law. If there are any problems or they insist on me
using their form, I would cite the law and ask the school or daycare
provider where it actually says in state statute that this particular
form is the only form that will satisfy the law. Since your parental
rights are at stake here, it is best to be vigilant and err on the
side of being overly cautious.?
It?s up to you whether or not you feel you can use/sign the state
issued form as is, or prefer to restrict your signature. However, if
you would like to use an alternate form, links to several are provided
on this page (and at the end of this answer), as well as links to
other forms and documents, such as a copy of the letter DHHS sends to
parent and college students.
If you run into trouble and need help, ?the staff of the "American
Family Voice" newspaper will provide that assistance. You may call the
... at 479-880-2026 or email ... at firstname.lastname@example.org. ...
AFV staffers are members and officers of the Arkansas Health Freedom
Coalition, www.arhfc.org .?
I know you requested no printouts with a bunch of legal language, so
I?ve tried to steer clear of that as much as I could. But I?m going to
go ahead and give you a link to some of it in case you would like to
read it after all, and also some links to further information and
documents, as well as a few other sites and organizations sympathetic
to your position and possibly able to help if you run into
Text of the Arkansas LAW applying to mandatory immunizations,
including the amended sections per Act 999 2003. Because the site is
in frames, I couldn?t get a direct link, but click on the link, and
then enter 6-18-702 in the search box.. Then click on ?2. 6-18-702.
Immunization? and scroll down to section (d)(4)(A).
REPRINT of the pertinent section of the law, with explanation in layman?s terms:
MODIFIED "Refusal to Vaccinate" Form
Scanned DHHS Letter to Parents/Guardian or College/University Student (2005/2006):
ARTICLE entitled, ?The Politics of School Immunization,? from ?Health
and Health Care in Schools,? Vol. 6, No. 3 ? May 2005. This article
has a section talking about the implications of the amended Arkansas
law that you might find interesting:
The above article references another ARTICLE entitled, ?Public Health
and the Politics of School Immunization Requirements,? and gives a
link for requesting a copy of it. A free copy isn?t available online,
but if you?d like to read a short abstract of that article, you can
find one here:
Their mission is ?to promote public awareness of the fundamental
issues concerning the vaccination controversy, to prevent vaccine
injury and death through education, to promote ethics in medicine and
journalistic reporting, and to protect the right of parents to
NATIONAL VACCINE INFORMATION CENTER (NVIC)
A national, non-profit educational organization founded in 1982. It is
the oldest and largest national organization advocating reformation of
the mass vaccination system.
They identify themselves as ?part of a national grassroots network
dedicated to providing information on vaccinations not often made
available to the public so that one can make the only informed choice,
complete avoidance and refusal.? Their stated goals are ?to reveal the
myth that vaccines are necessary, safe and effective; to expand our
awareness of alternatives in healthcare; to preserve our right to
abstain; [and] to repeal all compulsory vaccination laws nationwide.?
I do hope you will find that the information provided answers your
question fully, and gives you the tools you're looking for to be able
to get the exemption certificate you need for your son to attend the
University. If not, or if anything isn?t clear, please use the
?Request Clarification? feature to ask before rating and closing your
question. Also, despite care taken, sometimes links don't post
properly, so if any prove troublesome, please let me know so I can
check on them and repost if necessary. I?ll be happy to work with you
to be sure you have all you need to proceed with knowledge and
confidence. And I wish you and your son all the best.
Search strategy --
Search terms used:
[arkansas exemption immunization OR vaccination]
[arkansas law immunization OR vaccination]
[university arkansas immunization requirement]
[university arkansas application]
[request "refusal to vaccinate" form "Arkansas Department of Health"]
[form arkansas ?refusal to vaccinate?]
[arkansas "act 999 of 2003"]
It was then a matter of combing through the results, reading a lot of
documents, and following further links from the better ones. The most
helpful was the vaclib.org site, from which I found links to the best