By Elise Young
Parents who object to childhood immunizations for spiritual reasons would have to attest that vaccines conflict with their “bona fide” religion, under a bill released by a Senate committee Monday.
Legislation supporters said New Jersey policy on vaccine exemptions would not change. The law allows parents to opt out based on a written medical or religious reason submitted to school officials.
“By adding the words ‘bona fide,’ we certainly are suggesting that you should not be using a religion just as an excuse,” said Sen. Loretta Weinberg, the Teaneck Democrat who sponsored the legislation and is chairwoman of the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Commission, which approved the bill for consideration before the Senate.