2022 Bills We're Following
Campaign for a Healthy New Hampshire
This bill, which was held over from the 2021 session, now proposes to allow any individual to request a conscientious exemption for the COVID-19 vaccine. If passed, this legislation would tie the hands of businesses, schools and other organizations, and limit their ability to adopt and enforce vaccine policies recommended by public health experts. State government should not prevent hospitals, schools or any other organization from protecting the health and safety of their staff and community.
This legislation would allow families to opt out of school vaccine requirements for philosophical reasons. Early childhood immunizations have been shown to be safe and cost-effective tools for protecting infants and children from potentially life-threatening, preventable diseases. Current law allows for medical and religious exemptions for students, but a philosophical exemption, as proposed in this bill, could open the door for many more families to send their children to school unvaccinated and at risk for spreading COVID-19, influenza (flu), hepatitis, measles and many other deadly diseases.
As proposed, this bill would require all private employers and colleges and universities to grant requests for a conscientious exemption from employees or students for all vaccines. Further, it would prohibit an employer from requiring vaccines or any medical treatment approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration only for emergency or experimental use. These provisions would prevent businesses, hospitals and other entities from requiring its employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and other diseases, including influenza (flu), hepatitis, measles, and other deadly conditions. This would not only put individual workers at risk, but could increase exposure and risk to seniors, children, and other vulnerable populations.
This bill proposes to weaken New Hampshire’s vaccine registry, a critical tool in increasing vaccination rates and combatting infectious disease, by forcing individuals to opt-in to the program rather than allowing them to opt-out, as is the case under current law. Currently, individuals can choose at any time not to participate in the registry, a secure and confidential database that helps to monitor community immunization rates and identify coverage gaps. By shifting the program to “opt-in” participation, however, this bill would create new barriers to participation, limiting the data available, and leaving the state without a critical tool to inform its public health response.
Unnecessarily and adversely impacts the childcare market in New Hampshire – potentially limiting both access for families and narrowing the market for providers.
Prohibits a person from requiring that an individual who had COVID-19 or who is under the age of 18 receive a vaccination against the virus as a condition for employment, education, or access to businesses or entities open to the public.
Access to Treatment/Alcohol & Other Drugs
Would increase access to substance use treatment over telehealth by eliminating requirement for in-person consultation prior to prescription of Medication-Assisted Treatment.
HB 1591, eliminating the enforcement division of the liquor commission. Jeopardizes safe operation of licensed vaping and alcohol establishments by eliminating enforcement division of the NH Liquor Commission.
HB 1598, legalizing the possession and use of cannabis. Fails to meet the principles required for safe cannabis commercialization policy and regulation. Optimal cannabis commercialization policy for our state must utilize the best available scientific evidence to reduce public harm, limit youth and problematic use, and purposefully advance social justice and equity in the state.
HB 1622, relative to mental health parity. Ensures access to behavioral health treatment by strengthening oversight of state and federal parity laws, which require insurers to cover mental health and substance use services as they do physical health care.
SB 275, relative to the opioid abatement trust fund. Strengthens substance use prevention by allowing opioid abatement funds, received through legal settlements from opioid manufacturers, to be used on evidence-based prevention programs.
Children's Behavioral Health
HB 1531, modifies the oversight commission on children’s services. Supports New Hampshire children by strengthening Oversight Commission on Children’s Services, which providers guidance to state lawmakers and helps ensure resources are available to support children and families.
HB 1639, relative to the youth risk behavior survey in schools. Weakens New Hampshire’s children’s behavioral health treatment systems by changing participation in the Youth Risk Behavior Survey to an “opt-in,” reducing participation and data collection.
SB 416, relative to behavioral health assessment and treatment for children in out-of-home placements. Supports children with behavioral health needs by requiring an evidence-based behavioral health analysis or assessment before children are placed in institutional or out-of-home settings.
SB 444, relative to childhood adverse experiences treatment and prevention. Expands access to child-parent psychotherapy services, and creates a pilot program for young children who have experienced adverse childhood events and other emotional trauma.
SB 144 and SB 446, relative to child care scholarships. Helps child care providers serve more families in need by creating a pilot program modifying New Hampshire’s child care scholarship program to be enrollment-based, rather than attendance-based.
SB 407 HB 1536, relative to expanding Medicaid to include certain postpartum health care services. Supports young families, childhood development by expanding New Hampshire’s Medicaid program to cover postpartum services for new mothers.
HB 1028, relative to the form of individual health insurance policies. Diminishes quality and affordability of health care by allowing unlimited renewals of short-term, low coverage insurance plans.
HB 1526, relative to income eligibility for in and out medical assistance. Increases access to health care by expanding income limits for participation in New Hampshire’s “In & Out” Medical Assistance” program, which supports certain individuals in need.
SB 304 & HB 1576, relative to discrimination in public workplaces and education. Supports needed discussion about diversity, equity and inclusion by repealing ban on teaching of so-called divisive concepts, including race and gender.
It would enhance civic engagement by allowing public meetings to be conducted virtually, both at the State and local level. This would give the public a stronger voice in the policy-making process, allowing them to testify and participate in public proceedings from home or other locations outside of the Statehouse or local offices.
HB 1313, relative to rights to freedom from discrimination in higher education. Prevents important discussion about diversity, equity and inclusion by extending state’s “divisive concepts” ban to public colleges and universities.
NF Legislative priorities 2022 (Crossover Update).pdf