Muslim mother refused to vaccinate children over pork gelatine fear


A family court judge has ruled that four children must be immunised after their Muslim mother refused to consent because she said vaccines contained pork gelatine.

Judge Carol Atkinson said the youngsters - boys aged six and nearly eight months and girls aged four and two - had a "variety of outstanding immunisations".

She did not say what diseases the immunisations related to.

The judge, who made the immunisation decision following a family court hearing in London, concluded that the woman had a "paranoid view of the world".

Social workers had asked her to make rulings on a number of welfare issues - including where the children should live.

The children's parents, both in their twenties, had separated, the judge heard.

The children had been living with their mother, who is British, in London.

But the judge heard that the youngsters had been taken into police protection after concerns were raised about their care.

And she concluded that the youngsters should live with their Somalian-born father, who was also based in London.

She said he would have support from social workers - and said the children should stay in contact with their mother.

"These children have a variety of outstanding immunisations," said Judge Atkinson in a ruling.

"The mother has refused her consent on a number of different bases; that the vaccines contain pork gelatine is the most recent objection."

The judge added: "It transpires that the ones proposed do not.

"Having been shown that her fears are unwarranted, she has agreed that the children can have the necessary vaccines.

"I am nevertheless asked to make an order on the basis that she is likely to change her position and withdraw her consent, as has been the pattern in these proceedings and indeed in relation to this very issue.

"I bear in mind that I should make no order unless an order is necessary. I note the mother's willingness to consent but I have seen her agree to a whole host of things in these proceedings only to change her position later. Accordingly I intend to make an order."

Judge Atkinson did not identify the family involved.

She said social services staff from the London Borough of Newham had asked her to make rulings about the children.

The judge said the council had taken action after neighbours complained of a woman shouting abuse at children and telling of persistent crying.

She concluded that the children had suffered and would be exposed to more suffering if they stayed with their mother.

Judge Atkinson said the woman was emotionally volatile and had displayed aggressive behaviour.