Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Anti-vax teen that fought ban amid chickenpox outbreak loses in court—again


Judges in Kentucky have handed down another legal defeat to the unvaccinated teenager who sued his local health department for banning him from school and extracurricular activities amid a chickenpox outbreak earlier this year.
The Kentucky Court of Appeals on Friday quietly sided with the health department, saying that it was acting well within its powers to protect public health. The appeals court quoted an earlier ruling by the US Supreme Court saying that “Of paramount necessity, a community has the right to protect itself against an epidemic of disease which threatens the safety of its members.”
The Northern Kentucky Health Department declared the latest court decision a “resounding victory for public health in Kentucky,” in a statement.

Some ultraconservative Catholics, including Kunkel, are against certain vaccinations because their creation involves the use of fetal cells that were derived from aborted fetuses several decades ago. (Both types of chickenpox vaccines, Varivax and ProQuad, are developed with such cell lines.) The objection is out of line with the
 Roman Catholic Church and even Our Lady of the Assumption Church. Both advocate for vaccination. Still, Kunkel and others had obtained vaccine exemptions on religious grounds.In March, 18-year-old Jerome Kunkel filed a lawsuitagainst the department seeking an injunction that would allow him to return to classes and activities at his private Catholic school, Our Lady of the Assumption Church and Academy. The department had issued the ban on unvaccinated students to try to curb the spread of an outbreak of chickenpox at the school, involving 32 cases at the time.


  1. NY State ended religious exemptions


  2. https://vimeo.com/345081341


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