Small children will now be further protected from exposure to contagious diseases, such as the measles, after Gov. Bruce Rauner signed legislation into law today requiring certain childcare workers to show proof of vaccinations or immunity, said bill sponsor Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno (R-Lemont).
“This law has been a long time coming,” said Sen. Radogno. “I want to thank everyone for their support of this legislation to prevent the spread of measles and other deadly diseases among young babies and toddlers who are too young to be immunized.”
Senate Bill 986 requires all day care workers who care for children under the age of seven to present proof of measles, tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis vaccination or immunity. Sen. Radogno sponsored this legislation in response to an increasing number of measles cases in Cook County this year.
“Measles is one of the most preventable diseases,” said Sen. Radogno. “A majority of the population is vaccinated, but it is our responsibility to look out for young children who cannot receive the full benefits of immunization. This new law will put the necessary safeguards in place to ensure that childcare employees will not transmit these potentially fatal diseases.”
Radogno explained that children under age seven need the extra level of protection because the measles vaccination is actually a two-shot series that children do not complete until they are six years old. The Center for Disease Control recommends the first dose to be administered to babies 12-15 months old. The second dose is usually administered between 4-6 years of age.
Senate Bill 986 was signed into law by Gov. Rauner on Aug. 4 and took effect immediately.