State Sen. Kerry Roberts Clears Up Misinformation About COVID-19 Vaccinations for Children in Tennessee


Tennessee State Sen. Kerry Roberts (R-Springfield), who co-chairs the legislature’s Joint Government Operations Committee, this week said he had to clear up misinformation about administering the COVID-19 vaccine to children throughout the state.

Roberts said in an emailed statement that he and certain other committee members worried Tennessee had marketed the vaccine to minors and administered it without parental consent.

“We have not discouraged Tennesseans from being vaccinated nor have we discouraged Tennesseans from having their children vaccinated,” Roberts said in the statement.

“Further, it has been widely misrepresented that all children’s vaccines have come to a halt. To be absolutely clear, Tennessee’s efforts on childhood vaccinations are unchanged. The only exception is administering a COVID-19 vaccination without parental consent.”

Roberts told The Tennessee Star on Thursday that committee members saw what they considered social media posts and emails from state health officials deliberately marketing the COVID-19 vaccine to minors.

Tennessee Department of Health (TDOH) Commissioner Lisa Piercey, Roberts said, made it clear last month that her agency did not intend to market the vaccine to minors — although some committee members took exception to her remarks.

“It was he said/she said. They (TDOH officials) re-evaluated their outreach. They basically came back and said ‘We can understand why people thought we were marketing to minors, but we are changing what we are doing,’” Roberts said.

“For example, tweeting something out [like] a picture of a kid being happy about getting the vaccine. One person looks at that and says ‘You are marketing to a minor.’ Another person looks at that and asks ‘Seriously? You think a 12-year-old is reading the department of health’s Twitter feed?’ It’s a subjective thing. They agreed to evaluate what they were doing and would limit the marketing to the parents. That is the appropriate thing to do.”

Roberts said in the emailed statement that no one asked the TDOH to stop vaccinating children. He also said that TDOH officials have not stopped vaccinating children for COVID-19 or any other disease.

“Rather, they were asked to stop vaccinating children for COVID-19 without parental consent and stop marketing to minors,” Roberts said in the statement.

Piercey and members of her office, Roberts went on to say, have confirmed that it is not its policy to administer the COVID-19 vaccine to children without parental consent.

The Committee for Government Operations legislatively creates, renews, and oversees the 262 entities that comprise Tennessee state government.

Committee members also approve rules promulgated by any of the entities with rule-making authority. The entities include departments, commissions, boards, agencies, and councils. The entities also include the University of Tennessee, Tennessee Tech, University of Memphis, and our other state universities.

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]








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9 Thoughts to “State Sen. Kerry Roberts Clears Up Misinformation About COVID-19 Vaccinations for Children in Tennessee”

  1. Cannoneer2

    Stick to shuffling bean counters around, or possibly selling bicycles again. Leave science and medicine to the professionals.

  2. 83ragtop50

    How sad that a group of bureaucrats had to be reined in by the legislature for their promotion of the vaccine to children. And, in my opinion, being willing to use the mature minor sham to overrule parental rights. Does anyone really believe them when they claim that was not their intent? I sure do not. But what else can one expect when they are caught red handed?

  3. Noal Sartain

    For your convenience, here is a list of “science deniers” for your next text.

    NANCY PELOSI – went to hair salon – maskless – in a city under Covid restrictions
    LORI LIGHTFOOT – went to a hair salon in Chicago when Chicago hair salons were under lock down
    JOHN KERRY – Flew maskless and by private jet to a climate change conference
    JOHN COOPER – During a time he had placed Nashville was under social distancing mandates, Cooper staged a social justice protest with no social distancing. *Google search images for “Mayor Cooper Protests”
    AL SHARPTON – flies private jet to protests and funerals

    (1) We will believe in your “science” when YOU act like YOU believe in it!
    (2) We will not willing live in the world you want to force on the rest of us – a world in which YOU obviously have no intention of living.

  4. Lynn N.

    Good advice for children and even those in their 20’s.

  5. Ron W

    Forcing these “vaccines”, experimental mRNA gene therapy, on children is incredibly evil. Also forcing them to wear masks all day so they are rebreathing a high concentration of CO2 while restricting their oxygen is also horrific! Don’t let these “educators” have their way with your children.

    1. Jill Cole Obremskey

      These are inaccurate statements. Please review the science behind your claims.

  6. LM

    It’s just great that Senator Roberts cleared that up for us. Now , what can he do about the rest of the government’s criminal over-reach? How about telling school boards if they try to force children to wear masks and impose stupid , useless “distancing measures” – which are psychologically harmful – that each member of the school board will be arrested and individually charged? Can you do that for us , Mr. Senator?

  7. David Blackwell RN, BSN, CCM

    Your best bet is to let little Johnny catch the bug, keep him home from school, and keep him hydrated. Feed him chicken soup (i.e. Jewish Penicillin.) It will make him stronger in the end.

    1. Jill Cole Obremskey

      Or COVID Infection may cause significant illness in this child and long lasting complications. Also, prior to onset of his symptoms he may unknowingly spread it to his friends and family that are also not vaccinated. As a health care provider, I suggest you review the science behind your claims that Johnny will be stronger.