The following is a message from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., Children's Health Defense. Please take time to read and also listen to RFK's message in the video below.
Dear Friends Outraged by NYS’s Repeal of the Religious Exemption Right:
On Thursday, June 13, without even a hearing, the NYS legislature repealed the right to religious exemption from vaccination, and Governor Cuomo signed the measure into law calling the situation “a public health emergency.” In thirty days, all partially and unvaccinated children will officially be second-class citizens, unable to attend any school, public or private, or any camp.
This extraordinary, unprecedented action is a gross violation of children’s and families’ rights to religion, an education, parenting according to one’s conscience, and informed and voluntary consent to medical procedures. While New York State has an unquestionable interest in public health, that interest may not overwhelm all other fundamental rights. Legislation affecting constitutional rights must be carefully and thoughtfully balanced, something that was impossible in the legislature’s and Governor’s rush to ram through the repeal.
Children’s Health Defense (CHD) has been a leading advocate for children’s health and welfare for some time. It has devoted significant attention to the need for safer vaccines, as Congress called for in 1986 when it granted the pharmaceutical industry virtually blanket liability protection from vaccine injury. CHD supported intensive work to educate New York legislators on the need to preserve the religious exemption. Together with Robert Krakow and Patricia Finn, I represented plaintiffs in Brooklyn, NY to challenge a mandate overriding lawful religious exemptions.
I will challenge this repeal legislation in court. I am assembling a team of top flight attorneys to challenge this ill-conceived law on many grounds. While it is premature to spell out the CHD plan of attack, please know that I will help to bring the best legal talent available anywhere to overturn this unjust law.
You can help. Please contribute to CHD to challenge the NYS repeal. Doing so is not only essential for the 26,000 children in New York affected by this draconian measure, it is critical to the country. With California and New York having harsh, punitive laws in place, it is truly just a question of time before other states take a page out of New York’s book and ram through rights-stripping laws. We can fight this and win, but we need your help.
Thank you for your generosity.
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.