(CBS DETROIT) – The Michigan Senate is getting in the middle of the covid vaccine debate and working to put laws on the books to keep kids out of it.

Tuesday, state senators voted to block minors from COVID-19 vaccine requirements.

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State Senator Lana Theis of Brighton sponsored the legislation sharing her views about the issue on social media writing:

“The Michigan Senate passed my legislation that would prohibit the Department of Health and Human Services and local health departments from requiring minors to receive a COVID-19 vaccination under emergency public health orders. Every Republican voted in favor of the legislation and every Democrat voted against it.”

Wayne State University Infectious Disease Professor Dr. Teena Chopra says the data proves the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine for both adults and children.

The researcher and medical doctor also states it’s the only way to reach herd immunity.

“We are looking forward and hoping that throughout the summer the vaccination rates keep going up; and in the fall when we have school starting and also the fact that in fall, we usually see a surge in viral infections. We want at least 70 to 80 percent of our population fully vaccinated,” said Chopra.

Currently students are required to follow state vaccine laws for diseases like polio and the measles to attend school.

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But Dr. Chopra says the same mandate should not be ordered for covid vaccines since health care providers only have an emergency use authorization.

“We need a full approval on this vaccination and also because we want to give the freedom to parents to find out more about the vaccine, to ask questions and then make an informed decision,” said Chopra.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s office released a statement on the legislation saying:

“We know the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines are the best way for people to keep themselves and their families safe. The state has been very clear that we’re not currently exploring a vaccine passport concept, nor has there been any discussion about mandating vaccines. Instead of working with us to promote these lifesaving vaccines, Republicans are wasting time holding meetings with out-of-state conspiracy theorists and banning things that don’t exist.”

“While they continue to look backward, Governor Whitmer is moving forward with her plan to get billions of dollars of relief into the hands of Michiganders and small businesses to help our state emerge stronger than ever from the pandemic.”

The bill must be approved by the Michigan House before heading to the governor’s desk.

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