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Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed an executive order Tuesday prohibiting universities in his state from requiring students to vaccinate themselves against the coronavirus or wear masks while on campus.
“The vaccine works, and we encourage Arizonans to take it,” the Republican governor said in a press release Tuesday after signing the executive order. “But it is a choice and we need to keep it that way.”
The statement continued, “Public education is a public right, and taxpayers are paying for it. We need to make our public universities available for students to return to learning. They have already missed out on too much learning. From K-12 to higher education, Arizona is supporting in-person learning.”
Ducey’s executive order comes shortly after Arizona State University announced that all students are expected, although not required, to receive the coronavirus vaccine before the fall semester. Students were additionally told to upload proof of their vaccination on the university’s online portal.
The policy also requires students who aren’t vaccinated to wear a mask both indoors and outdoors, submit to daily health checks, and get tested for the virus twice a week. Nonvaccinated students would be exempt from those restrictions.
Ducey has said he would attempt to make the temporary measure he signed a permanent law by working with lawmakers, and it appears the executive order only applies to the coronavirus vaccine.
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Original Author: Andrew Mark Miller