County of Marin - News Releases - Marin Supports Stronger Immunization Laws

For Immediate Release
July 01, 2015

Marin Supports Stronger Immunization Laws

County responds to passage of SB 277, provides data on Marin vaccination rates

San Rafael, CA – After passing through the Assembly last Thursday and the Senate on Monday, yesterday Governor Jerry Brown signed SB277 into law.  Under this bill, children enrolling in schools are required to have certain vaccinations prior to entrance, and parents will no longer be able to obtain exemptions that are based on personal beliefs.  Only children who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons with be exempt.

Marin County Public Health is encouraged by the recent trend of improved immunization rates.  Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County Public Health Officer said, “This law will make our schools safer and our children better protected. It’s a big step forward for community health.”  The personal belief exemption rate in Marin has been declining since its peak in 2012.  Even so, last fall 6.5% of kindergarteners entering school had a personal belief exemption to required school immunizations, a significantly higher rate than the statewide average of 2.5%. Supervisor Katie Rice said, “I was pleased with Governor Brown’s decision yesterday.  We have a shared responsibility to our children’s health and the broader community as well.” 

For more information on school and child care immunization law please visit  For more information on immunizations in Marin, including an interactive map that shows the personal belief exemption rate of local Marin schools, please visit the HHS Immunization Program.

“We anticipate that the vaccination rate will increase with the passing of this bill.” said Danielle Hiser, Public Health Nurse of the Marin County Immunization program.  “Many serious diseases are preventable with vaccines, and a community that vaccinates protects its most vulnerable.”


Dr. Matthew Willis
Public Health Officer
Health and Human Services

3240 Kerner Blvd.
San Rafael, CA 94901
(415) 473-4163
Email: Dr. Matthew Willis
Marin HHS website