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Dad and mom sue North Allegheny College District over lifting masks mandate


Dad and mom sue North Allegheny College District over lifting masks mandate

Dad and mom are suing the North Allegheny College District over its resolution to raise the district’s obligatory masks mandate starting subsequent week, a transfer they declare might be “a dying sentence” for severely immunocompromised college students.

Lawyer and district mum or dad Kenneth Behrend filed the lawsuit within the U.S. District Court docket for the Western District of Pennsylvania on behalf of about 1,500 college students coated by protections within the American Disabilities Act in an effort to halt the Sunday expiration of the district’s masks mandate.

Dad and mom contend lifting the masks mandate at a time when the speed of an infection from COVID-19 is excessive places these kids at pointless threat, together with some that will probably be pressured to remain house to keep away from severe well being points.

“One of many kids particularly is severely (immunocompromised) and has coronary heart points,” Behrend mentioned. “His physician mentioned if (the masks mandate) is taken away, then the kid goes to need to go house.

“The physician mentioned it’d primarily be a dying sentence if the child will get COVID.”

The lawsuit facilities on an affordable lodging declare below the American Disabilities Act alleging discrimination towards disabled college students. Dad and mom are requesting a short lived restraining order to forestall the district from lifting the masks mandate till an infection charges subside.

“They’re entitled to the identical advantages … as all the opposite college students that aren’t disabled,” Behrend mentioned. “It’s simply to revive the established order and restore the common masking as long as the transmission price of an infection is within the substantial or excessive class in our county.”

The North Allegheny College District’s faculty making coverage beforehand beforehand was tied to group transmission charges earlier than the college board voted Dec. 8 to put off obligatory masking Jan. 16, no matter native an infection charges.

Behrend mentioned the present price of an infection in Allegheny County is “the very best it’s ever been.” The Facilities for Illness Management & Prevention’s COVID Information Tracker confirms group transmission in Allegheny County is “excessive” with a 32.92% positivity price.

In keeping with the lawsuit: “The (Allegheny College) Board’s vote allowing optionally available masking forces the mother and father of medically fragile faculty kids with disabilities to make the shockingly unfair or unjust resolution of deciding whether or not to drag their kids out of in-person studying which causes psychological hurt and havoc on the kid and household, or face the quantifiably elevated threat of bodily hurt attributable to publicity to extreme sickness or dying on account of COVID-19.”

The lawsuit mentioned the CDC, Pennsylvania Division of Well being and Allegheny County Division of Well being “all have advisable that college kids ought to common masks whereas at school buildings.”

“These mother and father shouldn’t be pressured right into a no-win alternative,” Behrend mentioned.

Behrend is main the same lawsuit towards the Delaware Valley College District in Scranton, and oldsters in different colleges are contemplating authorized motion, as effectively, Behrend mentioned.

“Dad and mom in a number of different faculty districts have been in contact with me within the Pittsburgh space,” Behrend mentioned.

A spokesperson for the North Allegheny College District declined to touch upon the pending litigation when contacted by WTAE.

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