Santa Clarita residents take to the streets to protest vaccine mandates

Serena Erickson, Social Media Manager

October 18, 2021, in the Santa Clarita Valley, approximately 100 parents and children joined to disagree with the new state law requiring students to receive Covid-19 vaccines and masks. According to Jeff Pelzel, the superintendent of the Newhall School District, the majority of the parents who have expressed their worries are vaccinated but are not ready to make the decision to have their child vaccinated.

What I think today was about was the frustration around a potential mandate on vaccinations,” said Pelzel.

Resident Sharon Simons, a retired nurse, said she joined the protest to stand against mask-wearing and in support of employees such as law enforcement workers who are being mandated to receive the Covid-19 vaccine – a policy she opposes. 

“It’s getting these masks off our children who need that social connection and those social cues (and) who need to breathe healthy air,” said Dawnel Derubeis, one of the five people who organized the protest according to The Signal.

“It’s the freedom of choice. It’s not to take anything away from anybody else. It’s not to take away the validity of anything. But the freedom of choice. That’s the country we live in.” said Derubeis according to The Signal, a local newspaper.

“I’m not against the vaccine. I think it has done great things to protect those who are at high risk. But children, they’re not high risk, it’s so new and it hasn’t been approved, and anything that is not approved should not be mandated.” said Angie Hofstad, a parent protester.