SENATE, No. 316

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

220th LEGISLATURE

PRE-FILED FOR INTRODUCTION IN THE 2022 SESSION

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator† JOSEPH F. VITALE

District 19 (Middlesex)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

†††† Requires students, staff, and others present at institutions of higher education to receive COVID-19 vaccine.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

†††† Introduced Pending Technical Review by Legislative Counsel.

††


An Act concerning student vaccinations and supplementing Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes.

 

†††† Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

†††† 1.††† a.† The Commissioner of Health shall require vaccination against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) as a condition of in-person enrollment in, attendance of classes or activities at, employment by, or the provision of services at or through, a public or private institution of higher education in this State.

†††† b.††† Beginning with the 2021-2022 school year, an institution of higher education shall not enroll or retain on an in-person basis any student, or employ, retain, or utilize the services of any other individual on an in-person basis, who has not submitted acceptable evidence of the studentís or other individualís vaccination against COVID-19, as provided by regulation of the Commissioner of Health.

†††† c.†††† The Commissioner of Health shall require each institution of higher education in this State to offer the COVID-19 vaccination to its students, staff, employees, and in-person contracted workers through the institution's student health services program or through a contractual agreement with a community health care provider.

†††† d.††† A student or other individual shall not be required to receive a vaccination against COVID-19 under this section if the student or other individual, or the student or other individualís parent or guardian in the case of a student or other individual who is younger than 18 years of age, submits to the institution of higher education:

†††† (1)†† a written statement issued by a licensed physician indicating that the COVID-19 vaccine is medically contraindicated for a specific period of time and the reasons for the medical contraindication, which shall be valid medical reasons as determined by regulation of the Commissioner of Health.† A statement that meets the requirements of this paragraph shall exempt the student or other individual from the vaccination requirements of this section for the stated period of time; or

†††† (2)†† a written statement explaining how the administration of the vaccine conflicts with the bona fide religious tenets or practices of the student or other individual, or the parent or guardian of the student or other individual, as appropriate; except that a general philosophical or moral objection to the vaccination shall not be sufficient for an exemption on religious grounds.

†††† e.†††† No person shall be required to receive a vaccination against COVID-19 under this section if the person will have no in-person presence on the premises of an institution of higher education.

 

†††† 2.††† The Commissioner of Health shall adopt rules and regulations pursuant to the ďAdministrative Procedure Act,Ē P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.), as shall be necessary to implement the provisions of this act.

 

†††† 3.††† This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

†††† This bill requires vaccination against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) as a condition of in-person enrollment in, attendance of classes or activities at, employment by, or the provision of services at or through, a public or private institution of higher education in this State.† Commence with the start of the 2021-2022 school year, institutions of higher education will be prohibited from enrolling or retaining on an in-person basis any student, or employing, retaining, or utilizing the services of any other individual on an in-person basis, who has not submitted acceptable evidence of vaccination against COVID-19.

†††† Each institution of higher education in New Jersey will be required to offer the COVID-19 vaccination to its students, staff, employees, and in-person contracted workers through the institution's student health services program or through a contractual agreement with a community health care provider.

†††† A student or other individual may be granted an exemption from the COVID-19 vaccination requirements set forth in the bill if the student or other individual submits:

†††† 1)††† a written statement issued by a licensed physician indicating that the COVID-19 vaccine is medically contraindicated for a specific period of time and the reasons for the medical contraindication, which are to be valid medical reasons as established by the Commissioner of Health.† The medical exemption will be valid for the period of time indicated in the physicianís written statement; or

†††† 2)††† a written statement explaining how the administration of the vaccine conflicts with the bona fide religious tenets or practices of the student or other individual, or the studentís or individualís parent or guardian, as appropriate; except that a general philosophical or moral objection to the vaccination will not be sufficient for an exemption on religious grounds.†

†††† No person will be required to receive a vaccination against COVID-19 under the bill if the person will have no in-person presence on the premises of an institution of higher education.