Guarding Our Borders with Gardasil: Immigrant Women and Physical Autonomy

42 Pages Posted: 29 Mar 2010 Last revised: 15 Jun 2010

See all articles by Jessica Lavariega Monforti

Jessica Lavariega Monforti

Pace University

Renee Ann Cramer

Drake University's Program in Law, Politics, and Society

Date Written: April 16, 2010

Abstract

On September 30, 1996, Congress amended the Immigration and Nationality Act, or INA, by adding the requirement that all immigrants prove receipt of all vaccinations recommended by the Center for Disease Control's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (CDC-ACIP). Thus, vaccines that are only recommended to the U.S. population automatically became mandatory for immigrants. Merck Pharmaceuticals obtained its license for the vaccine, Gardasil, which protects against the development of some types of genital ulcers and cervical cancer, in June 2006, and the CDC-ACIP recommended, in March 2007, that all females 11 to 26 should get vaccinated against the human papillomavirus, or HPV. With the exception of girls in Virginia and Texas's public schools, this controversial vaccine is not required for any female in the United States, public school-educated or not. However, because it is recommended by the CDC, Gardisil is required for any woman immigrating to the United States or adjusting their status to legal permanent resident. This paper focuses on the Gardisil mandate as an issue of reproductive and personal autonomy denied to immigrant and prospective immigrant women today, and explores the astonishing silence on the issue from immigrant groups, reproductive rights advocates, and women's issue organizations.

Suggested Citation

Lavariega Monforti, Jessica and Cramer, Renee Ann, Guarding Our Borders with Gardasil: Immigrant Women and Physical Autonomy (April 16, 2010). Western Political Science Association 2010 Annual Meeting Paper , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1580881

Jessica Lavariega Monforti (Contact Author)

Pace University ( email )

1 Pace Plaza
Manhattan, NY 10038
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/site/drjessicalavariegamonforti/.

Renee Ann Cramer

Drake University's Program in Law, Politics, and Society ( email )

2507 University Ave.
Des Moines, IA 50311
United States

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