Judge Hears Challenge Of NY Law On Vaccine Exemptions

Matthew Lotz / U.S. Air Force

WATERLOO — A judge has reserved decision on a request to block a New York law that eliminated religious exemptions for student vaccines.

The request Tuesday came in the case of an Amish father who says vaccines run counter to his family’s religious beliefs. The lawsuit in Seneca County Court contends the law violates the constitutional right of religious freedom that first drew Amish settlers to New York in the 1800s.

New York in June became the fifth state to do away with religious exemptions for vaccines amid the worst measles outbreak in 27 years. That left more than 26,000 students who had the exemptions with the choice to either receive the shots or be homeschooled.

The Seneca County suit is one of at least a dozen pending legal challenges.


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