Some Orthodox Jewish residents say refusing measles vaccines is a part of their religious belief, but on the streets of Williamsburg there is also strong support for vaccinations and worries that the outbreak might spread.
"The Westchester County Department of Health is working with the families and health care providers to identify the locations where the children may have exposed others", Latimer said. The new position states "the use of such vaccines does not signify some sort of cooperation in voluntary abortion" and that parents have a "moral obligation to guarantee the vaccination coverage necessary for the safety of others".
The kids, who were not vaccinated, appear to have been exposed to measles in Rockland County and Brooklyn where there have been ongoing outbreaks.
"As the outbreak continues to grow and even spread to other counties in NY, the mayor has ordered that people who are unvaccinated have 48 hours to get their shots or they will be fined "$1,000 per instance".
(Donald G. McNeil Jr., April 2019) - "Faced with an expanding measles outbreak, Mayor Bill de Blasio of NY declared a public health emergency on Tuesday and ordered a program of mandatory vaccination in parts of Brooklyn". But two years ago, measles cases unexpectedly popped upward again, rising 30 percent in a single year. Six of the infected children are siblings.
Q: How many U.S. children are vulnerable?
The biggest issue has been measles, which is incredibly contagious and spreads easily to those who aren't vaccinated. Complications can include hearing loss, pneumonia, swelling of the brain and death. Epidemiologists have chronicled how worldwide travel by Orthodox Jews to outbreak areas, closely interrelated Orthodox social networks, and high numbers of Orthodox children at ages most susceptible to a highly contagious disease are key factors in the spread of diseases of this kind (see here and here).
"This is a country that has an interesting relationship with religion - the country was founded by people seeking some kind of religious liberties", Siepser said.
City health officials declined to comment on the mayor's order. This outbreak has the second greatest number of infected individuals since measles was eradicated in the country in the 2000s.
"It's really scary out there", she said. Since it has affected children too, this is now a serious concern. People can spread measles before they even know they are sick. Additionally, the CDC explains that sometimes people are unable to receive the MMR vaccine and become susceptible to infection during outbreaks among unvaccinated communities. Vaccines are safe and effective.
The virus can live for up to two hours in the air or on nearby surfaces. "I think it will help in getting the community covered", he said. He claimed the vaccine was linked to autism and bowel disease.
As of Friday, measles - officially eliminated from the United States in 2000 - had struck 167 people in this county along the Hudson River, including nine new cases this week.
He also represents parents in Rockland County, a New York City suburb with a large Orthodox Jewish community, who challenged a local government executive order barring unvaccinated children from indoor public spaces.