A lawyer is poised to sue New York City for ordering mandatory measles vaccinations in the toughest action against the virus in US history.
Mayor Bill de Blasio declared a state of emergency on Tuesday, which, he said, gave him the power to require vaccinations in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood, where more than 250 measles cases have been reported since September, particularly in the Orthodox Jewish community.
City officials said those who refuse could face fines of up to $1,000 or six months in jail, according to New York Senate emergency laws.
Michael Sussman, a civil rights lawyer, says there are not enough cases to warrant a state of emergency, he believes the move unlawfully targets religious groups, and he plans to have a case filed against the city by Friday.
Public health law experts say the case could swing either way; it will all rest on how deadly a judge believes measles to be.