Judge Agree with County Health Director in Omaha’s Mask Mandate Squabble

A district judge in Nebraska refused to block Omaha’s new mask mandate, which allows it to continue in practice, while it is challenged in court by officials.

The state of Nebraska argues that Lindsay Hughes, Douglas County’s health director, does not have the authority to issue a mask mandate, which it believes has the power to do so. According to the Associated Press, Hughes also believes a mandate is necessary because of “astronomical spikes” in Nebraska’s virus cases.

“I’m not claiming that masks are going to end the epidemic or stop the epidemic,” Huss told the AP on Jan. “But it’s going to slow it down to give my brothers and sisters breathing room in health care. You all need to take care of me.”

In the past, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services has rejected requests to mandate Hus. Governor Pete Ricketts also opposes mask mandates and has done so throughout the pandemic, although Omaha and other cities have imposed them, according to the AP.

Omaha Mayor Jean Stort also opposed the issuance of a new mask mandate. However, Stort believes that Hus has the power to issue a new one.

Douglas County District Court Judge Shelley Stratman said the House has the power to issue a mask mandate. He said that if city and state officials do not like [the authority Huse possesses]They should change the law.

“It appears plain text, at least at this stage, the authority to support the defendants is with Dr. Hughes,” she said.

Hughes’ attorney, Robert Slovak, argues that the Nebraska lawsuit is politically motivated.

According to the AP, Slovak wrote in a statement, “Often the response to COVID-19 has abandoned science at the altar of politics, which would be the case here if plaintiffs were able to stop common sense mitigation strategies on the issue.” succeed.” ,

According to the CDC, Nebraska reported 754 COVID-19 cases as of January 24. Hospital officials expect the number to continue to rise, the AP reported. In the week ending January 20, Nebraska reported 29,141 cases to the CDC, a spike from the previous week that resulted in 27,987.

Omaha’s current mask mandate covers those five and older wearing face covers when in public places and places that can maintain a social distance of six feet, according to the AP. The sitting mandate does not apply to churches or restaurants, but it does apply to schools.

According to the AARP, in May and June 2021, 29 states ended mask orders after the CDC announced full immunization, allowing people in most public settings to safely omit face coverings.

However, some states have been placed in a mask mandate or hybrid order to protect their residents. New York currently has an indoor mask mandate; However, it was declared invalid by a judge on January 24, which Governor Cathy Hochul and her administration are currently challenging.

There is a mask mandate after a judge in Omaha, Nebraska declared that the health director has, in fact, been empowered to enforce a mandate. Above, protesters protest masks, vaccine mandates and vaccine passports with some adjuvant vaccines at the State House on January 5, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts.
Joseph Prezioso / Getty Images

In Connecticut, masks and face coverings are required only for people who have not been vaccinated. There is a hybrid order in Rhode Island, which requires large spaces to cover the face; However, it is up to the discretion of small businesses whether or not they require customers to wear masks, according to the AARP.

Washington state is the only state with an outdoor mask policy, but it is required for 500 or more people.

According to the AARP, residents in California, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon and Washington are required to wear masks, whether or not they have been fully vaccinated.

Mask Mandate Milwaukee Midwest Omicron Covid
Omaha, Nebraska’s new face mask mandate was approved in court after a judge agreed that the county health director actually has the authority to enforce a mandate. Above, shoppers, some wearing facemasks, walk into the Mall of America on June 16, 2020 in Bloomington, Minnesota, after some of the mall’s shops reopen on June 10.
Kerem Yusel/AFP

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