Lawsuit seeks to reverse Philadelphia mask mandate with renewed vigor

Attorney Thomas W. King III, who was involved in last year’s successful challenge to a statewide mask mandate in schools, said the city’s emergency order went against the recommendations of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and “a renegade standard anywhere.” unfounded. Others in the world.”

The lawsuit accuses city health officials of “usurping the power and authority” of state lawmakers, the state health department and the state advisory health board.

Kevin Lessard, communications director for Philadelphia’s mayor’s office, said officials were “unable to comment on this particular case,” but cited the court’s refusal of an emergency motion by another plaintiff for a preliminary injunction against the mandate. “The courts reaffirmed once again that the city has both the legal authority and the requisite flexibility to implement the necessary precautionary measures to control the spread of COVID-19,” Lessard said.

Most states and cities dropped their masking requirements in February and early March following new guidelines from the CDC that focused less on case counts and more on hospital capacity, and said most Americans could safely take their own lives. Mask can be taken off.

Philadelphia ended its indoor mask mandate on March 2, but on Monday, Health Commissioner Dr. Cheryl Bettygole cited a more than 50% increase in confirmed COVID-19 cases in 10 days, marking the border between the city’s Guidelines call people. Wear a mask inside the house.

Bettygole said, “If we fail to act now, knowing that every previous wave of infections is followed by a wave of hospitalizations, and then a wave of deaths, it may be too late for many of our residents.” It will happen.” Health inspectors are to begin enforcing the mask requirement at businesses in the city from Monday.

The restaurant industry pushed back against the new rules, saying employees would bear the brunt of customer anger over the new rules.

The state’s Supreme Court ruled in December that the governor’s administration had no legal authority to require masks in Pennsylvania’s schools and child care centers, citing the termination of an emergency disaster declaration by state lawmakers. The 6-0 decision said that state law gives health officials broad powers to protect public health, but does not allow the department to “take legal action on its own accord or in all matters relating to the disease.” “

Leave a Comment