On Thursday afternoon, State Sen. Brad Hoylman and state Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz were joined by medical professionals and State Sen. David Carlucci, D-New City, on the steps of City Hall to call for support to end non-medical exemptions to vaccinations for school-aged kids.
Hoylman and Dinowirz are the main sponsors of the bill that could gain ground thanks to the fear and hysteria surrounding the 425 measles cases in New York found in Brooklyn, Queens, and Rockland Counties. According to Hoylman, “no major religious group advocates against vaccinations as a matter of official doctrine.”1 (The law does NOT require that the religious exemption be “official doctrine.”)
Carlucci said, “The goal here is to push legislation to remove all non-medical exemptions for vaccination for children to go to school in New York state. We’ve seen the spread of measles really spread like wildfire in communities where the vaccination rates are not high.”1 (Why is no one talking about all the adults who haven’t been boostered? Children are not the only links in their “herd immunity” chain.)
During the 2015-16 and 2017-18 legislative sessions, similar bills to end religious exemptions failed.
“If the current legislation (S2994/A2371), which is in committee in both the Senate and Assembly, was to become law, New York would become the fourth state that allows only medical exemptions for vaccinations, following California, Mississippi and West Virginia.
All 50 states require that students be vaccinated for diseases like measles, mumps, whooping cough, chickenpox and polio, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. All states allow exemptions for medical reasons, while 47 allow exemptions for religious reasons and 17 also permit ‘philosophical exemptions.'”1
(What is especially troublesome here is that this particular outbreak has singled out the Orthodox Jewish community and yet there don’t seem to be any rabbi’s who are upset by the restrictions in public or the idea of forced vaccinations.)
But even without the new law, the fear mongering and restrictions have seen more than 17,400 people vaccinated since the outbreak began.
Dinowitz also said he believes many people use the religious exemption because New York doesn’t have a philosophical exemption. Regardless, people should have the right to decide what is best for their family.
We will continue to post the other side of this argument, the rational and science-based side that the media and government would like to pretend doesn’t exist, for as long as we are able.