Recent Developments

Issues that affect ministers and churches
Court Rules Schools' Vaccination Requirements Trump Parents' Religious Exemption
Federal
State:
Key point. Restrictions imposed by state law on unvaccinated children attending public schools may not violate parents' constitutional right of religious freedom.

A federal appeals court ruled that the constitutional right of parents to the free exercise of their religion was not violated by a state law excluding unvaccinated children from public schools under specified circumstances. New York requires that students in the state's public schools be immunized against various vaccine-preventable illnesses. The New York Public Health Law provides that "no principal, teacher, owner or person in charge of a school shall permit any child to be admitted to such school, or to attend such school, in excess of fourteen days" without a certificate of immunization. The statute provides two exemptions from the immunization mandate. First, a medical exemption is available "if any physician licensed to practice medicine in this state certifies that such immunization may be detrimental to a child's health." Second, a religious exemption is available for "children whose parent, parents, or guardian hold genuine and sincere religious beliefs which are contrary to the practices herein required."

Log In For Full Access

Interested in becoming a member? Learn more.

Posted: April 21, 2016
View All
from our store
Pastor, Church & Law, Fifth Edition

Pastor, Church & Law, Fifth Edition

Learn which local, state, and federal laws apply to religious organizations.
20 Finance Questions Churches Ask

20 Finance Questions Churches Ask

Richard Hammar answers relevant tax and finance questions for church leaders.
Protecting Your Tax-Exempt Status

Protecting Your Tax-Exempt Status

Understand the requirements of your tax-exempt status.

ChurchSalary

ChurchSalary

Let ChurchSalary do the work. Get personalized compensation reports for staff and pastors.