1. March 2011 21:07
VERMONT JOINS CALIFORNIA AND MASSACHUSETTS ADVANCING GENETIC PRIVACY EFFORTS
Vermont has become the third state in 2011 to introduce genetic privacy legislation- following on the heels of legislative action in first Massachusetts and then California. Each of these individual measures is evolving naturally and is a response to the individual circumstances in each state. Activity at the state level indicates a growing consensus that as a matter of public policy, addressing concerns around Genetic Material and Genetic Information are starting to resonate with the public.
Steve May, Executive Director of the Forum on Genetic Equity added: “The three bills are not carbon copies of one another, but they do reflect a belief that certain values are universal. Chief among these is the idea that individuals need to be able to exert control and make decisions about their own genetic information, genetic material and genetic privacy.” May continued, “There is no disputing that the introduction of these three bills represents the forward edge of a growing political movement.”
Jeremy Gruber, President of the Council for Responsible Genetics reflected “Well over a decade ago, our state legislative campaigns to end genetic discrimination in health insurance and employment across the country provided the momentum necessary for a successful national campaign to pass the federal Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act. These laws are important but their protections are incomplete. We must ensure that as the next decade of the “genetic revolution” unfolds, that every American is entitled to comprehensive privacy protections for their own personal genetic information and that of their family. I applaud Massachusetts, Vermont and California for taking the lead and bringing us one step closer to that common goal.”
CALIFORNIA BILL SB 559 (Padilla)
MASSACHUSETTS BILL SD01461 (Chandler)
VERMONT BILL HB 368 (Pearson)