Children aged 12 and older may obtain vaccination without parental consent under a California state bill that passed a key legislative committee Thursday. 

The state’s youngest age group may consent to vaccines without parental consent if state Bill 866, authored by Sen. Scott Wiener, becomes state law. An 11-member committee voted unanimously 7-0 to move the bill forward, allowing more autonomy for youth ages 12-17. 

The bill now moves to the full Senate. 

Under current state law, minors aged 12 to 17 cannot be vaccinated without parental permission unless the vaccine specifically prevents sexually transmitted diseases. People within that age range may consent to Hepatitis B and Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines. 

“Teens should be able to protect their own health with vaccines – whether against COVID, flu, measles or polio – even if their parents refuse or can’t take them to get the shot,” California Sen. Scott Wiener tweeted Thursday. 

Weiner introduced the bill when California's schools were to impose a COVID-19 vaccine mandate that would require vaccination among students to attend in-person classes. Those unable to comply would be banned from attending in-person classroom instruction or other school activities. 

Gov. Gavin Newsom delayed the vaccine mandate bill until at least July 2023. 

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