WHATLEY KALLAS FILES AMICUS BRIEF ON VACCINATION REQUIREMENTS

On September 16, Whatley Kallas submitted an amicus brief on behalf of medical societies supporting New York’s elimination of a religious exemption for vaccination requirements. The New York legislature eliminated the exemption in 2019 in the wake of a large outbreak of measles in an undervaccinated community. Several parents challenged the change in the law as a violation of their religious freedom, and the New York Supreme Court denied their challenge. In 2020, they appealed to the Appellate Division. Whatley Kallas submitted an amicus brief supporting the State of New York, which argued that eliminating the religious exemption did not infringe on the appellants’ constitutional rights. The brief, which was joined by the American Medical Association, Medical Society of the State of New York, American Academy of Pediatrics, and New York State American Academy of Pediatrics, explained the concept of herd immunity, showed why near-perfect vaccination rates are required to protect against measles, and cited evidence that the New York legislature based its decision on sound evidence. A copy of the brief is here.