Broad Bill To Eliminate Religious Exemptions For School Vaccines Unravels In New Jersey
Only medical exemptions would have been permitted at most schools and day care centers. While similar bills have passed in four states, the New Jersey lawmakers couldn't gather enough support after tweaking the bill and raising concerns.
The New York Times:
Bill To End Religious Exemptions For Vaccinations Collapses In N.J.
It began as one of the nation’s broadest proposed bans on religious exemptions to childhood vaccines. But after weeks of sustained and boisterous protests by vaccine skeptics, as well as a last-minute effort to amend the proposed bill to win over key New Jersey lawmakers, the effort collapsed on Monday in the State Senate. The Senate president, Stephen M. Sweeney, continued to maintain that science, not the protesters, would eventually emerge victorious. (Tully, 1/13)
NJ Bill To Eliminate Religious Vaccine Exemptions Dies, Supporters Vow To Try Again
State law since 2008 has allegedly allowed parents to abstain from mandatory vaccinations for their children if they write a letter saying it would vaccinate their religious beliefs, with no further explanation required. Parents secured exemptions for 14,000 children in the last school year. However, recent outbreaks of preventable diseases have caused widespread alarm in the area. (Budryk, 1/13)
Future Uncertain For Bill That Would Eliminate Religion As A Reason Not To Vaccinate Public Schoolchildren In New Jersey
The bill remains a divisive point as an increasing number of parents in the United States are citing faith to avoid getting their children vaccinated, according to a new study -- even though no major religion opposes vaccination. According to the CDC, childhood vaccination is "essential because it helps provide immunity before children are exposed to potentially life-threatening diseases." (Haider, 1/13)