Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Fast Forward

New York Health Department Closes Orthodox Day Care Over Measles Outbreak

A Jewish child care center in Brooklyn was ordered closed by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene for failing to provide access to vaccination records.

United Talmudical Academy in the Williamsburg neighborhood allegedly refused to comply with the city’s recent order for schools in heavily-Jewish areas of Brooklyn to ban unvaccinated children and maintain vaccination records in response to a measles outbreak, the department claimed. As a result, the health department ordered the facility closed, the first time an educational institution has received such a consequence since the outbreak began in October.

Twenty-three other yeshivas and day care centers have been given notice that they are in violation of the health directive, the department said.

The city’s order was established in order to combat the record-breaking measles outbreak, which is largely confined to Jewish areas and has been exacerbated by anti-vaccine misinformation campaigns targeting Jewish households. At this point, 329 cases of measles have been confirmed since last October, with 44 new cases in the last week, the department said.

Most rabbis and local newspapers have urged their constituents to vaccinate, but some families have refused due to fears of side effects, while others are not inherently opposed to vaccines but have not followed recommended inoculation schedules.

United Talmudical Academy, which is reportedly affiliated with the Satmar sect of ultra-Orthodox Judaism, did not immediately return a request for comment.

Health officials expect that the crisis will get worse during the upcoming holiday of Passover, which starts on Friday night, as many families will be traveling and confined in close quarters for ceremonial meals.

Aiden Pink is the deputy news editor for the Forward. You can reach him at [email protected] or on Twitter, @aidenpink

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.