Protesters take it to the district over mandates


Parent’s take the streets protesting against the possible vaccine mandate for schools. Photo by: Adi De Clerck

Anti-vaccine mandate protest is held at the VUSD Education Services Center

On the morning of Oct. 15, anti-vaccine protesters met outside of the Ventura Unified School District office on Stanley Ave.

According to a flyer handed out at the protest, the protest was tied to several other events, including EPAC’s (Ensure the Preservation of America & Our Constitution) luncheon that took place on Oct. 16 at the Sportsman restaurant in Camarillo, Northpointe Baptist Church’s Sunday worship service and a strike on Oct. 16, when parents planned to keep their kids home.

Anti-mandate activists posted to try and rally for their cause. Photo from: Shannon Robb Hammond on Facebook.

The flyer detailed that the luncheon on Oct. 16, would go over questions like “Are you concerned about the direction America is being taken?” and “Are you concerned that the Constitution and the Bill of Rights may one day be fundamentally transformed?”

Parent Danica Gomez said, “I want all parents to have their own choice if they want to have their children vaccinated or not. I don’t think it should be mandated and forced upon children.”

Protesters gathered outside of the VUSD office. They covered both sides of the sidewalk in front of the office with some protesters standing in the island divider of the road. Security made accommodations for all protesters by allowing the protesters to park in the VUSD parking lot. The parking lot was guarded by two security guards who declined to be interviewed.  Protesters ranged in age with many parents following their children holding posters.

Cole Brocato and his son Caleb Brocato protesting outside the VUSD office against the possible COVID-19 vaccine mandate for schools. Photo by: Adi De Clerck

Mother of three, Loida Kozak said, “I seek to spread courage. I think there’s so many of us out there that are like minded [. . .] I want to spread courage and support and stand for what we believe in.”

Kozak said, “Most of the vaccines I had, my parents were okay with [. . .] Most vaccines, I have only been vaccinated under my parents choice. Any adult vaccine I have taken were tetanus shots and things like that [. . .] I have never had a flu shot in my life.”

Ventura High School freshman Corey Muhlitner said, “I don’t want the COVID shot. I want to go to school and be a functioning person of society, but without having to get something forced on me by the government to stop the spread.”

Edited Nov. 3 for accuracy.