In the News

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An Oregon Followers of Christ mother pleads guilty to criminally mistreating her son 6/28/2022
New Missouri law aims to reduce abuse and neglect at religious boarding schools 4/4/2022
Religious Freedom Claim Does Not Block Child-Abuse Investigation, Court Rules 7/2021
751 unmarked graves found at second boarding school site 6/25/2021
Indian children forced into Catholic boarding schools; hundreds died 6/1/2021
Oregon mom gets 3 daughters back from faith healing grandparents 5/6/2021
Connecticut repeals religious exemption from mandatory vaccinations of children in schools and childcare centers 4/28/2021
Bill allowing broader vaccination opt-outs could be dangerous, expensive for Kentucky 3/26/2021
Grisly murders thought to be due to fringe religious beliefs 6/19/2020
Maine voters uphold law eliminating religious & philosophical exemptions for required vaccinations 3/4/2020
13 deaths of Idaho children tied to faith-based medical neglect 2/17/2020
California limits vaccine medical exemptions 9/9/2019
NY court upholds repeal of religious exemption to vaccinations 8/25/2019
Murder and abuse charges filed in Michigan baby’s faith death 7/25/2019
Religion and vaccine refusal are linked 6/19/2019
New York becomes the 5th state to eliminate all non-medical exemptions from immunizations 6/13/2019
Maine repeals non-medical exemptions from immunizations
Abuses exposed at Christian ranch for troubled boys 5/11/2019
Free Saints Assembly parents refuse custody deal that prohibits corporal punishment 4/9/2019
Faith-based medical neglect in Pennsylvania 3/19/2019
Nine-year-old girl on the verge of death rescued from a faith-healing church in African village 10/4/2018
Michigan faith-death raises again the question: Should religion ever be a defense in the death of a child? 8/28/2018
Michigan parents charged with murder in baby’s faith death 8/9/2018
Idaho faith healer charged with child sexual abuse; religious beliefs prevented abuse reporting 7/19/2018
Son and granddaughter of Followers’ founder tell church members to get medical care for children 7/15/2018
Oregon parents plead guilty in baby’s death, urge fellow church members to get medical care 7/9/2018
Jehovah’s Witness theology discourages reporting child abuse 5/24/2018
Australian university investigates researchers promoting Universal Medicine cult 5/1/2018
Idaho could protect kids in anti-medical sects 4/24/2018
Texas pastor guilty in fatal exorcism of toddler 3/23/2018
Measles cases in Europe quadrupled in 2017 2/23/2018
Coffin-carrying protestors march on Idaho Capitol 2/19/2018
Idahoans protest faith-healing exemptions 2/19/2018
‘Inoculate yourself with the word of God’: How religion can limit medical treatment 2/7/2018
Idaho lets kids die when parents have religious beliefs against medical care 1/8/2018
Non-medical vaccination exemptions plateau but not in Texas 11/21/2017
Canadian mother sentenced to three years in prison for negligence in death of her son 11/17/2017
North Carolina church uses power, lies to keep grip on kids 11/12/2017
Michigan Supreme Court to hear faith-based medical neglect case 10/3/2017
Michigan parents charged in faith death lose custody over corporal punishment 9/16/2017
Canadian FLDS members convicted of polygamy 7/24/2017
Homicide charged in seventh criminal case against Oregon faith healers 7/2/2017
Oregon Followers of Christ parents charged with homicide in infant’s death 6/5/2017
Anti-vaxxers target Somali community; 73 measles cases after vaccine rates plummet 6/2/2017
California vaccination rates up sharply in wake of new law 4/22/2017
Idaho faith deaths continue, coroner and legislature prevent investigation 4/18/2017
Faith Tabernacle pastor is charged with failure to report in a toddler’s death 3/16/2017
Oregon Followers of Christ couple investigated for infant’s death 3/10/2017
Decades of abuse at North Carolina church commune reported 2/27/2017
Retired Idaho Supreme Court Chief Justice endorses repeal of faith-healing exemptions 2/24/2017
Most recent Faith Tabernacle child’s death recalls church’s infamous history of allowing children to die 2/16/2017
Idaho Canyon County Sheriff urging lawmakers to make change to faith healing laws in Idaho 2/3/2017
Pennsylvania parents charged in toddler’s faith death; should religious beliefs come before children’s health? 2/3/2017
Measles outbreak grows in Los Angeles Orthodox Jewish community 1/21/2017
Vaccine exemptions on the rise in a number of US states 1/20/2017
Prayer and “natural” remedies substitute for medical care of boy’s fatal illness 1/4/2017
Minnesota pastor beats boy because boy wanted to test God 12/22/2016
Child fatalities in Africa from ritual healing 11/18/2016
Colorado parents found guilty of medical neglect; claimed girl’s illness was spiritual 11/10/2016
Mom who cited religious freedom pleads guilty 10/28/2016
Idaho city government holds forum on deaths in anti-medical sects Moscow Human Rights Commission 10/25/2016
Former naturopath now calls it quackery, ‘essentially witchcraft’ 10/20/2016
Girl dies after 68-day religious fast in India 10/10/2016
American Academy of Pediatrics announces policy that states should eliminate all non-medical exemptions from immunization requirements 8/29/2016
Appeal of conviction in Alberta toddler’s meningitis death 8/14/2016
Vaccine rates on the rise in the U.S. 7/29/2016
Lenient sentence, defiant parents in son’s preventable death 6/24/2016
Christian boarding schools escape oversight in many states 6/11/2016
Canadian Pentecostals on trial for murder in medical neglect of diabetic child 6/3/2016
Contractor tied to polygamists ruled in contempt for child labor violations 6/2/2016
“Natural medicine” devotees guilty in son’s death 4/26/2016
Alabama bill to license religious child cares introduced 4/20/2016
Tennessee House follows Senate in voting to repeal ‘spiritual treatment’ exemption to child-abuse law 4/14/2016
Letting them die: parents refuse medical help for children in the name of Christ 4/13/2016
Tiny tombstones: Inside the FLDS graveyard for babies born from incest 3/9/2016
Federal jury finds FLDS church leaders guilty of controlling city governments and discriminating against nonbelievers; Dept. of Labor case on child labor law violations proceeds 3/8/2016
Idaho Republicans think parents have a religious right to let kids die from treatable illness 3/8/2016
Child deaths in Idaho bring urgency to debate over faith healers 1/21/2016
UK devotees of faith healing convicted in baby’s fatal medical neglect 11/10/2015
Jury selection begins in trial of New Jersey mother accused of killing daughter 11/10/2015
Brothers beaten in a New York church to make them confess sins; one dies 10/14/2015
Oregon Supreme Court upholds parents’ convictions in faith-death case 10/14/2015
Department of Labor sues FLDS Church alleging child labor violations 9/9/2015
California governor signs strict law requiring vaccinations for most kids 6/30/2015
Radio Interview: “Protecting the Children”, Freethought Radio A podcast interview with Rita Swan; begins at the 22-minute mark. 6/29/2015
California’s vaccine bill passes Assembly, next hurdle: Gov. Jerry Brown 6/25/2015
Anti-medical parents charged in child’s death from untreated meningitis 6/12/2015
Michigan enacts discrimination in child placements 6/12/2015
New AMA policy favors ending nonmedical vaccine exemptions 6/8/2015
Author of Fact vs Fiction recalls child faith-death of Ashley King in National Geographic interview 5/31/2015
Vermont Says No to the Anti-Vaccine Movement 5/29/2015
FLDS Church fined $2 million for child labor violations 5/14/2015
California Senate votes to repeal all non-medical exemptions from immunizations 5/14/2015
Vermont House votes to remove philosophical exemption to school entry vaccines 5/12/2015
Radio Interview: “Eastern Standard”, WEKU Lexington, KY An interview with Rita Swan & Dr. Paul Offit 5/5/2015
UPDATE: Australia removes religious exemptions from vaccination laws; Christian Scientists mute 4/18/2015
“Disneyland” measles outbreak declared over, but vaccine fight continues 4/17/2015
Australia strips anti-vaxxers of welfare—unless they are Christian Scientists 4/15/2015
Texas church members accused of starving ‘demon-possessed’ toddler 4/14/2015
In Germany, ‘mystic’ parents get jail time for denying child medical treatment 4/8/2015
Orthodox Jewish ritual cause of fire that killed 7 children 4/1/2015
UK launches plan to stop faith-based child abuse 3/31/2015
Vaccine refusal helped fuel Disneyland measles outbreak, study says 3/16/2015
Fundamentalist belief in demonic possession has real-life dangers 3/12/2015
(For more details on the Arkansas exorcism story, see “Casting Out Demons” and other articles in the Arkansas Times.) 3/12/2015

“Parents’ Beliefs vs. Their Children’s Health”, a debate 3/11/2015
Doctor to Legislators: Refusing Medical Care Isn’t Religious Freedom 3/9/2015
Intent behind Idaho parental rights bill questioned 3/1/2015
Idaho’s faith-healing debate pits child welfare against parental rights 2/22/2015
California measles outbreak is up to 87 cases in 7 states, Mexico 1/26/2015
“Faith over Medicine”, a CNN video report on child faith-deaths among the Idaho Followers of Christ 1/19/2015
Aboriginal child dies after relying on indigenous remedies for leukemia 1/19/2015
Perfect storm at Disneyland for measles outbreak 1/14/2015
Vaccine policy upheld over religious objections 1/7/2015
Conviction upheld of father who subjected son to religious dietary beliefs 12/23/2014
Oregon Church of the Firstborn parents get 10-year sentences in the death of their 12-year-old daughter 12/19/2014
Strict belief-based diet contributes to child’s death 12/17/2014
Why does God kill so many children in Idaho? 11/17/2014
Parents found guilty of manslaughter in faith death of daughter 11/10/2014
Catholic clergy oppose HPV vaccine in Canada 9/21/2014
Judge grants religious exemption from testifying about child labor violations 9/16/2014
The case of eight Idaho boys, removed from abusive home of FLDS leader, mishandled in court? 9/1/2014
Texas infant dies in anti-medical sect; no charges filed 8/11/2014
Vaccine fears can lead to babies getting brain bleeds 7/28/2014
Judge denies right to religious exemption from immunizations 6/22/2014
Pertussis epidemic declared in California 6/13/2014
Judge: Faith-healing beliefs are evidence in trial 5/28/2014
Utah researchers: Polygamy is inherently harmful 5/6/2014
(To read the research paper:
Polygamy: Not ‘Big Love’ But Significant Harm 4/28/2014
Oregon Supreme Court rules state can immunize children in its custody 4/25/2014
Tennessee high court to hear faith-healing case 4/22/2014
Religious cult leader charged with 59 counts of sexual abuse of minors 4/18/2014
Time to end vaccine opt-outs? 4/7/2014
Video: ABC Nightline Prime report on the Church of Wells and a recent child faith-death 4/5/2014
Health officials worried about new clusters of measles outbreaks 3/3/2014
Massachusetts religious exemption brings in fraud and waste 2/28/2014
Idaho faith-healing bill won’t get hearing 2/26/2014
Oregon Church of First Born parents set for trial in faith-death of daughter 2/20/2014
Pennsylvania Pentecostal couple sentenced in second baby’s faith-death
Bill introduced to modify faith-healing exemption in Idaho’s injury-to-a-child crime laws 2/7/2014
Faith-healing exemption in Washington state gets scrutiny 2/6/2014
Judges orders Wisconsin couple in prayer-death to jail 1/30/2014
New case of neonatal herpes infection following ritual Jewish circumcision 1/28/2014
Religious circumcisions not subject to Pennsylvania oversight 1/25/2014
Washington state bill: Christian Science prayer for children no longer a legal substitute for medical care 1/17/2014
Video report: Idaho Interfaith Alliance backs bill to prevent faith-deaths of children 1/17/2014
Idaho legislator champions bill to curb faith-deaths of children 1/16/2014
Video report: Idaho state representative and former Followers of Christ adherent advocate for changes to laws which lead to medically preventable child deaths] 1/16/2014
Philadelphia couple pleads no contest to third-degree murder in infant son’s faith death 11/14/2013
Child-rape assembly line among Satmar Hasidim charged 11/11/2013
Fundamentalists sentenced in death of Ethiopian adoptee 11/9/2013
Followers of Christ in Idaho: At least ten more child deaths uncovered 11/7/2013
(See also Part 2 of the investigation, autopsy reports on 12 dead children, and the Story behind the story
And this report from 2011: Two Idaho children die in faith-healing sect; religious exemption prevents prosecution)

Religious handbook parents given 65 years for killing adopted daughter 10/30/2013
Pediatricians oppose religious exemptions and public funding for unproven care 10/28/2013.
(See full American Academy of Pediatrics policy statement)

UK investigates Twelve Tribes for severe corporal punishment 9/29/2013
Measles outbreak in Dutch bible belt 9/10/2013
Oregon Church of the Firstborn girl dies of diabetes 8/29/2013
Texas measles outbreak linked to church 8/25/2013
New Hampshire Supreme Court rejects religious privilege; state law requires clergy to report abuse without confidentiality exception 8/22/2013
Schaibles lose bid to dismiss homicide charges 8/10/2013
Child sex abuse coverup among Orthodox Jews 7/22/2013
Wisconsin Supreme Court chooses not to rule on “mature minor” case 7/10/2013
CHILD Press Release: Wisconsin Supreme Court upholds child homicide convictions 7/3/2013
(See also CHILD Newsletter number 1, 2008 for the original story on Madeline Kara Neumann.)

Court upholds parents’ convictions in prayer death 7/3/2013
CHILD President’s Op-Ed: Protect children and faith with religion-neutral laws 6/25/2013
CHILD member speaks on injury from Christian Science practice 5/29/2013.
Homicide charges filed in second child’s death 5/22/2013.
(See also CHILD Newsletter number 3, 2010 for story on death of the first child.)

Babies’ herpes linked to circumcision practice 4/8/2013
Wisconsin Supreme Court to rule on religious exemption to felony child abuse 3/25/2013
Infant and mom die in anti-medical sect 2/20/2013
Arizona places foster kids in polygamist enclave 1/11/2013
Faith healer got medical care for himself, but not for child 1/7/2013

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