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We believe our government should take all reasonable measures to protect Americans and immigrants from infectious diseases to prevent a worsening public health crisis.

Americans, immigrants, and asylum seekers face increasingly dangerous health risks as diseases like measles and tuberculosis, as well as COVID-19, spread at an alarming rate—and as previously eradicated infections re-emerge around the world, including in our country.

Infectious diseases are an equal opportunity scourge, though they cause greater harm to the most vulnerable—babies, the ill, and the elderly. 

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) requires that all legal immigrants are vaccinated, there are no vaccination requirements for illegal immigrants, temporary visa holders, or visitors to the U.S. 

To prevent a worsening national public health crisis, we urge the administration to secure our borders and ensure that immigrants and others come to the U.S. legally and with verified vaccination histories.

Sign the petition.


Here are a few reasons why it’s urgent that you sign the petition:

FACTS:

  • While the CDC requires that legal migrants are vaccinated, the same standards are not required for illegal immigrants or nonimmigrant (temporary) visa applicants.
  • Attempts are made by immigration enforcement officials to assess the health status of the 100,000+ migrants entering the country illegally or seeking to claim asylum each month. Yet, these efforts do not cover the estimated 60,000 or more people who illegally cross the border undetected each year.
  • “The large movement of people across the United States and Mexico border has led to an increase in health issues, particularly infectious diseases such as tuberculosis.” – CDC
  • Those illegally crossing the southern border are not just coming from Mexico, Central or South America, but also from East Asia, Africa…  essentially the entire world. The potential to bring in diseases and contagions is great and poses a serious public health threat.
  • Far worse than ever before, we face an urgent infectious disease threat to public health for both American citizens and unvaccinated immigrants themselves:
    • As of May 31, 2019, there have been a record 971 reported cases of measles in at least 26 states nationwide just since the beginning of 2019.
    • There are now measles outbreaks in every state along the southern U.S./Mexico border.
    • Outbreaks have been traced back not only to travellers abroad, but also to visitors from other countries.
    • There are considerable risks of Zika, mumps, Ebola, tuberculosis, which the World Health Organization states is the world’s most deadly infectious disease, as well as a new virus affecting children that mimics polio.
    • There are also rising risks of other “medieval diseases” that are making a comeback in America, such as the bubonic plague, typhoid fever, and typhus.
    • The decrease in vaccinations in the U.S. is
    • already causing real harm, particularly to those who are unable to receive vaccines. Babies, for example, cannot be vaccinated against measles until a year old.
  • Migrants who are in the U.S. illegally usually don’t seek traditional healthcare outlets and instead rely on an underground market for health care, making it harder for the CDC to know about every infectious disease case in the U.S.

Border control is a public health issue. The outbreak of infectious diseases is a tremendous public health risk to American citizens and migrants alike. That’s why it is urgent that our government intervenes at the border to stop the spread of infectious diseases and prevent a worsening public health crisis.

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