A federal judge has ruled in favor of a New York City policy that allows schools to ban unvaccinated kids from attending classes when another child has come down with a vaccine preventable illness, the New York Times reports. The lawsuit consolidated separate challenges from three families who claimed their religious freedom was violated when their kids were banned from school for up to a month at a time during disease outbreaks.
Over the past two years, several different lawsuits have been filed against the city by parents who object to its immunization law. “We don’t want anything being put into our bodies at all,” Nicole Phillips, the mother of two children at a Queens-area school who have missed several weeks of class this school year because they haven’t been vaccinated, explained when she sued back in 2012. “We’d rather rely on our natural immune system and our faith in God. This is about my children’s rights.”
But Judge William F. Kuntz II of the Federal District Court in Brooklyn disagreed with that argument, determining that the Supreme Court has “strongly suggested that religious objectors are not constitutionally exempt from vaccinations” and concluding that the city’sstrict vaccine guidelines are in place to safeguard its residents’ well being.” More @ Think Progress