Make failing to vaccinate children a crime says MP
FAILING to immunise children should be made a crime, an MP said yesterday.
Politicians are increasingly alarmed over ‘creeping cynicism’ about the safety of vaccinations caused by the so-called ‘anti-vaxx’ movement.
With measles epidemics in several parts of the world, Labour’s Paul Sweeney told MPs the rising resistance to vaccination was a ‘national emergency’. He added: ‘It’s probably worth exploring making it a criminal offence [for parents] not to immunise children.’
Last week Health Secretary Matt Hancock suggested children could be banned from schools and nurseries if they have not been vaccinated.
Yesterday’s Commons debate was led by new International Development Secretary Rory Stewart, who said those who questioned the safety of the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine were ‘profoundly disturbing, distinctly misleading and even ignorant’.
Scepticism over MMR began in 1998 when London doctor Andrew Wakefield published a now-discredited paper linking it to autism.