The French are far from laissez-faire when it comes to vaccinations. In France, receiving vaccinations for children is an obligatory matter. Due to the countries strict vaccination laws, proof of vaccination is demanded by crèches (day cares), schools, and sports centers for both adults and children. Which is why, when a couple refused to have their children vaccinated against polio, diphtheria, and tetanus they were accused of mistreating their children and had to appear before a court.
Samia Larere and her husband Marc refused to have their children, ages three and 15 months, vaccinated. They appeared before a judge whom, after listening to their case, decided to refer it to the highest legal authority in France, the Cour de Cassation, to decide whether the parents’ right to refuse immunizations is a constitutional issue.
The couple argued that the obligatory immunizations may do more harm than good. They admitted to the courts that the French laboratory Sanofi Pasteur had sent them the two vaccinations that combined the polio, diphtheria and tetanus vaccines. However they did not want to use them because they also contained a “toxic product”. The couple risks two years in prison and a fine of about €30,000. Their case has sparked national debate on France’s strict vaccination laws.
Should France Adjust Their Vaccinations for Children Laws?
Samia Larère told a French journalist before their hearing, “There are serious studies carried out today that prove vaccines can make our children ill more than protect them.” Larère also said, “There are additives, like mercury and aluminum which are dangerous.”
The couple’s legal representative Emmanuel Ludot told the judge, “Is the right to refuse vaccination a constitutional liberty? There’s an urgent need for clarification of this issue. “ The couple is not violating the French Law, but is unable to sign their children up for kindergartens, play centers or any organized activities that involve other children.
In September, France’s public health council (HCSP), called for a national examination of the country’s vaccine policy, which it said had become “complicated, confused and unequal”. It called for a “renewal of vaccine policies that should become far more voluntary.”
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