Attorney General Ashley Moody is the latest Republican Attorney General to express opposition to a new federal rule mandating masks and vaccinations in federal Head Start programs.
The Federal Register promulgated rulemaking language to be effective at the end of January. Employees and contractors are required to be vaccinated, and students as young as 2 will be required to wear masks in most cases.
For Moody, a consistent opponent of vaccine mandates, this represented the latest example of federal overreach.
“They just issued a new rule for our Head Start programs, for some of our youngest children. The employees must be vaccinated. Another mandate, on top of the three that we’ve already seen. And they’re even requiring that children as young as 2 years old have to wear masks in these programs. That will affect so many people across our nation,” Moody said on the Fox Business Channel Wednesday.
The mandate will be effective in Florida, Moody noted, adding that a gender bias component is arguably in play here.
“This will apply to Head Start programs across the nation. Absolutely. So employees of that program, teachers, those that we’ve trusted to teach our young children. As a mom, not only does that appall me, because children (as young) as 2 years old will have to be masked. But most of these teachers in these Head Start programs, I want to say 85%, are women who will now be forced to be vaccinated,” Moody said.
“This is a new mandate that not too many folks are focusing on. Of course, I’m a mom paying very close attention to what’s being mandated for our children and our teachers, and I will aggressively push back on this newest mandate,” Moody added.
Moody made the comments on the Varney and Co. program, as attorneys general elsewhere are already taking action that she may mirror soon.
“I will not allow Texans to be coerced into getting a vaccine because the federal government is giving them an ultimatum to choose between their health or their child’s preschool education,” said Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who has already filed a preliminary injunction against the Head Start mandate.