Monday, January 25, 2021

Jewish Organization Fails To Prove Violations In Denial of Its Use of Free After-School Space

In Chabad Chayil, Inc. v. School Board of Miami-Dade County Florida, (SD FL, Jan. 22, 2021), a Florida federal district court dismissed claims by a Jewish non-profit organization that the Miami-Dade County School Board and the County's Office of Inspector General (OIG) violated its 1st and 14th Amendment rights when it took away its rent free use of school facilities for after-school programs. The OIG, after investigating an anonymous complaint, claimed that Chabad Chayil violated various regulations in applying for rent-free use and in operating its program. The court concluded that Chabad Chayil had failed to show that its claims met the requirements for liability under 42 USC §1983. It "failed to allege facts showing that any School Board official or staff member was a final policymaker with respect to the decisions or actions that Chabad Chayil maintains were unconstitutional...." It failed to show a OIG custom or policy that would make it liable for free exercise violations. Chabad Chayil also failed to prove equal protection or due process violations.