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Newborn Seized Because Mom Opposed Vaccination (And, Yes, She’s Suing)

Newborn Seized Because Mom Opposed Vaccination (And, Yes, She’s Suing)

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PHILADELPHIA — A case that might dramatically expand parental rights has been appealed to one of the highest courts in the land.

If the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals rules in favor of Jodi and Scott Ferris, it might restrict the power of social workers and medical professionals to take children and make decisions for families.

A lower court ruled against the couple earlier this year without giving them the trial their Home School Legal Defense Association attorneys had requested. In October, the case was appealed to the Third Circuit.

In 2010, a social worker and police officers seized Jodi Ferris’ newborn baby at the Hershey Medical Center in Hershey, Pa., just hours after birth, allegedly because the mom refused to let the baby get a vaccination and because she preferred natural childbirth over hospital delivery.

The workers reportedly kept the baby girl for around 48 hours and only let Ferris see the infant every few hours. The baby was eventually returned to Ferris and her husband, Scott, but only after a court order.

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“That afternoon a social worker and two police officers came to the hospital and took our baby and kicked us out of the hospital,” Ferris said in an HSLDA podcast.

Ferris thinks the infant was taken from her because she refused to let the child be vaccinated for Hepatitis B, according to The Minot Daily News. The baby was born in an ambulance in the medical center parking lot after Ferris was rushed there in premature labor. Ferris had wanted to give birth at home but couldn’t because her midwife could not arrive in time.

Jodi also said she thinks her belief in alternative medical care and natural child birth caused staff to take action against her.

“I think the hospital staff took our wanting information as a challenge to their authority,” Jodi Ferris said. “One nurse told us that she took our questions as a personal attack against her qualifications as a nurse.

“The hospital’s attitude was we’re the experts so just do what we tell you. It bothers me that the doctors and the hospital were offended by our questions and used the so-called emergency removal to override our decisions just because they disagreed with us.”

The HSDLA filed a civil rights complaint against doctors at the medical center and a social worker in federal court in March 2012, claiming that the couple’s Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment rights were violated.

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7 comments

  1. The control of government is out of control! Personal rights, including abortion, home-schooling, vaccinations, are being violated and decisions made by others is not acceptable.
    Maybe with an administration that offers smaller (state government) will be more favorable.

  2. It’s a disturbing trend, where people are persecuted for questioning the “authorities.” It’s a sad day in America. It’s our duty and privilege to question them. We are their bosses, since we are the voters. They are not our rulers.

  3. Dr. Ramon de Torres

    The nanny state is growing because of these events. Doctors and nurses are important part of our lives today, but they are not gods and their knowledge is limited to their area of expertise, if that. I’ve known doctors who stopped studying and growing in knowledge once they began their practice, and who depended on drug reps for information.

  4. Im surprised not more of these nanny state shills dont get dealt with in the harshest of manner.

  5. Too much Government control. A mom has the right to choose for her child. Imagine hospital having such power over a mother, who gave birth to her child. I don’t care what her beliefs are but how much power are we willing to give these people over us. I thought that was why the three branches were created so that the law was not abuse and an individual would have their rights, no matter what. I am dis hardened by this. My heart goes out to this family, may the father help us.

  6. Just be glad Hillary didn’t win the election. This sort of affront to our rights would be commonplace under a Clinton nanny state. I remember her being quoted back in the 90’s as saying children needed to be raised with the guidance of experts and professionals. Hopefully as the Washington swamp gets drained the elitists will get the boot en masse and we’ll hear less and less of this nonsense.

  7. It’s been suggested that expecting parents prepare in advance a written, signed agreement between themselves and hospital delivery staff with regard to any plans for vaccination of a newborn. Take enough people to the hospital to enforce the agreement. It may also help to learn about birth certificates (contracts) and other ways parents unwittingly accept jurisdiction over their children. What a world we live in, huh?

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