Judge blocks Florida from enforcing new law mandating some vaccinations

A federal judge on Wednesday granted a preliminary injunction that prevents Florida from enforcing its ban on certain vaccines and still enforces a statewide requirement for parents to submit a statement that they believe their children have medical reasons to avoid some childhood immunizations.

Until the issue is resolved, some Disney World employees who do not have health insurance from the company will be required to submit a vaccination statement.

“We are in support of parents being able to make their own choices,” said Disney spokeswoman Jacquee Wahler. “We also support people having access to the information they need to make informed choices.”

A federal judge has ordered Florida to stop enforcing its law mandating certain childhood vaccinations, which was set to take effect Oct. 28.

The Orlando Sentinel reported that the provision was included in a bill passed in 2014 to phase out the requirement that private health insurance plans cover vaccines against diseases such as polio and measles.

Florida has long had a policy requiring school children to get vaccines to attend public schools. The Disney portion of the law applies to most private schools that accept state aid and includes vaccines that protect against measles, mumps, whooping cough, hepatitis B and chickenpox.

Parents can express a belief that their children aren’t protected by the vaccines.

Circuit Judge Claude Hilton in a court filing said the Florida law violates the U.S. Constitution because it “places an undue burden on the right to peaceably assemble.”

Hilton also said the law is inconsistent with national laws and a federal appeals court.

As part of the ruling, the judge said the state couldn’t enforce the law against school children and parents until the issue is resolved by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Roughly half of Florida’s teachers receive health insurance from Disney, the Sentinel reported.

Friday will be the first day when public school students will go back to school in Florida.

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