Friday, May 22, 2020

Local Wisconsin COVID-19 Orders Challenged On 1st Amendment Grounds

A lawsuit was filed this week in a Wisconsin federal district court against ten local public health officers and a number of other local and state officials seeking to prevent enforcement of local COVID-19 Emergency Orders after the Wisconsin Supreme Court invalidated a statewide emergency order because it exceeded legislative authority and was improperly adopted. (See prior posting.) This week's lawsuit was brought by seventeen plaintiffs, one of whom is a pastor.  The complaint (full text) in Yang v. Powers, (ED WI, filed 5/20/2020) alleges in part that the local orders violate plaintiffs' free exercise rights and the Establishment Clause, as well as their freedom of assembly and equal protection rights. Urban Milwaukee reports on the lawsuit.