Decoupling Vaccine Laws
10 Pages Posted: 22 Jun 2016 Last revised: 20 Oct 2016
Date Written: June 20, 2016
When a parent decides not to vaccinate, that parent is deciding to leave the child at risk of preventable disease - a much larger risk than the small risk of vaccine injury. Arguably, the law has some tools to protect the child from that decision, including family law court decisions, injunctions in cases of high risk, and tort or criminal liability if a child is harmed.
This short essay explains that exemptions from school immunization requirements do not prevent the law from protecting a child against parental decisions not to vaccinate her, or compensating a child harmed by non-vaccinating. School immunization requirements, however, may be a barrier to criminal liability for non-vaccinating.
Keywords: Children's rights, vaccines
JEL Classification: I18, I1
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation