Richmond, VA (WRIC)– Dozens rallied outside of the Science Museum of Virginia in Richmond Wednesday, to protest against medical mandates in the Commonwealth.
Families attending the rally held signs that read, “We are not guinea pigs,” “My body my choice,” and “No forced vaccine.”
Speakers and protesters were chanting slogans like “Free to be free” and “We will not comply.” The protest stemmed from a statement made by State Health Commissioner Dr. Norman Oliver, in support of a COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
Virginia state law gives the Commissioner of health the authority to mandate immunizations during a public health crisis if a vaccine is available.
“It is killing people now, we don’t have a treatment for it and if we develop a vaccine that can prevent it from spreading in the community, we will save hundreds and hundreds of lives,” Oliver said.
The Virginia Freedom Keepers, the local state chapter of Freedom Keepers United, helped to organize the march against mandates.More than 10,000 Virginians belong to the organization to raise awareness of current and upcoming legislation regarding medical freedom. Representatives were also joined by members of the Virginia Citizens Defense League.
“The problem becomes that people mind mandates that they oppose and so we’re trying to stand up and make people recognize the mandates that exist in a law that are hiding in plain sight that they may want to oppose and actually share with their legislators,” said Kathleen Medaries, who is the Director of Communications of the Virginia Freedom Keepers.
The office of Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has said they aren’t planning on mandating a vaccine. Many protestors are urging lawmakers to provide the option to choose.
“People are just saying look. I have a right to decide to delay, decline, or accept. Whether I’m Republican or a Democrat I want to be able to have a choice for my family and my body,” said Medaries.
Health officials say an immunization could be released as early as 2021.
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