Friday, November 06, 2020

10th Circuit: Plaintiff Lacks Standing To Challenge Kansas Vaccination Requriement

 In Baker v. USD 229 Blue Valley, (10th Cir., Nov. 3, 2020), the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed for lack of standing a mother's lawsuit challenging Kansas' vaccination law which requires school children to be vaccinated, but allows religious exemptions. Plaintiff's son, S.F.B., was granted a religious exemption. The court rejected plaintiff's claim that nevertheless she suffered injury. The court said in part:

Ms. Baker’s unusual standing theory falls outside any recognized notion of injury based on the potential enforcement of a law. She argues the District misapplied Kansas law in granting the religious exemption to S.F.B. in response to the Bakers’ statement. She asserts that if the District would apply the law correctly, it would revoke the religious exemption, injuring her and S.F.B. From this she contends there is a credible injury in fact....

First, we evaluate Ms. Baker’s injury argument that the District may revoke S.F.B.’s religious exemption because Kansas law compels that result. We find that Ms. Baker has not shown a concrete, imminent, and non-speculative injury in fact.

Second, we consider Ms. Baker’s contention that Kansas law inhibits her from exercising certain “options” for S.F.B. including home schooling and child care. We reject this theory because Ms. Baker alleges only a “some day” intention to exercise these options that is insufficient to demonstrate an injury in fact.