Judge rules New York county can’t bar unvaccinated children from public places

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A state judge has ruled a New York county cannot ban unvaccinated minors from public spaces amid a measles outbreak, according to The Washington Post.

“Children are hereby permitted to return to their respective schools forthwith and otherwise to assemble in public places,” Judge Rolf Thorsen wrote in the Friday decision.

{mosads}The ban was announced in March in Rockland County after more than 150 measles cases were reported. It barred any resident of the county under 18 who had not yet been given the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine from public places such as schools and parks until either the end of the 30-day emergency declaration or until they received the vaccine.

In response, a group of parents filed a lawsuit calling the emergency declaration “arbitrary and capricious” and writing it had led “children to be denied attendance at nursery programs and schools and has effectively prohibited their movement and denied them the right to congregate and assemble in public places.”

Dori Reiss, a professor at U.C. Hastings College of Law in San Francisco, told the Post the declaration was for a short enough period that it would likely not be worth the effort to fight the court ruling.

Last week, New York lawmakers proposed legislation that would eliminate non-medical religious exemptions for vaccinations. There have been nearly 400 confirmed cases of measles in 15 different states between January 1 and March 28 of 2019, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


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