Eleven students in Ogdensburg will need vaccinations or to be schooled at home
BY JIMMY LAWTON
North Country This Week
OGDENSBURG -- Eleven students attending Ogdensburg School District will be forced to get vaccinations or become home schooled following a change in state law.
As of June 13, there is no longer a religious exemption to the requirement that children be vaccinated against measles and other diseases to attend public, private or parochial school or child day care settings. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo signed the legislation last month.According to the governor, the United States is currently experiencing the worst outbreak of measles in more than 25 years, with outbreaks in pockets of New York primarily driving the crisis.
As a result of non-medical vaccination exemptions, many communities across New York have low rates of vaccination, and those unvaccinated children can often attend school where they may spread the disease to other unvaccinated students, the release said.
"The science is crystal clear: Vaccines are safe, effective and the best way to keep our children safe. This administration has taken aggressive action to contain the measles outbreak, but given its scale, additional steps are needed to end this public health crisis," Gov. Cuomo said. "While I understand and respect freedom of religion, our first job is to protect the public health and by signing this measure into law, we will help prevent further transmissions and stop this outbreak right in its tracks."
The state still allows an exemption for students who can't be vaccinated for medical reasons. However, Ogdensburg Superintendent Kevin Kendall said 11 students at the district last year remained unvaccinated for religious exemptions.