New York politicians are facing a backlash from parents who say requiring vaccinations for children isn’t needed and, in some cases, is a violation of civil rights.
Protests have been held against legislation passed by the New York City Council that would extend vaccine requirements to infants enrolled in nursery school and publicly funded private schools. Parents for Vaccine Choice has held several rallies and marches this week calling for a repeal of the ordinance.
The issues came to a head as NYC schools began applying the new laws.
The New York Times has reported on a mother’s struggle to enroll her child at a nursery school, where officials are suggesting an infant with a condition she doesn’t know of or who doesn’t speak English isn’t a good fit.
At a recent demonstration, one mother we spoke to tearfully talked about how painful it is to take her young son away from his friends.
Parents for Vaccine Choice is also pressing legislators in the state of New York to rethink new legislation that would require parents to present proof they’ve read and understand any and all of the requirements if they want to take their child to a state-funded location. Those sites include state institutions like public schools, hospitals and other centers of education.
The group has called the legislation “anti-vaccine fascism”.
These matters, if not resolved, could have far-reaching consequences as more parents opt out of vaccinations. Many are citing their own experiences or those of close family members as a reason to not vaccinate their kids. Many states have seen that trend, including: Colorado, North Carolina, Virginia, Alabama, and Mississippi.
The measles outbreak that began in Disneyland is also a major factor. California began enforcing a new mandate last year, requiring a note from medical providers to be able to apply for non-medical exemptions from vaccinations. Some parents cited Disneyland as a reason they didn’t want to give their kids vaccines for measles, even though it hasn’t been diagnosed in California for months.
If implemented in New York, there’s concern that the new requirements could begin to limit the education options of many.