The USC Democratic Committee would like to give a brief update on the pending lawsuit over universal masking in the district schools:
WHAT HAS BEEN HAPPENING WITH THE LAWSUIT?
On Sunday, January 23, a temporary injunction was granted by the Third District Court of Appeals to force the district to continue universal masking in the schools pending a hearing of the original legal case.
Two new legal filings were made this week regarding that case:
- A motion to intervene was filed in the lower district court on behalf of several USC parents and children. They are seeking to intervene in the lawsuit. They do not want their children to have to wear masks and have divided themselves into three categories: (1) those who are diagnosed with cancer, autoimmune, or respiratory illness; (2) those who fall under the IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Act); and (3) those who believe their children’s mental health, well-being, and social development are being overlooked.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Pennsylvania Chapter of AAP filed a motion to be able to file an amici brief (“friends of the court”) on behalf of the plaintiffs (in favor of the original 5 families who sued the district). The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals granted their motion. The AAP argues in this filing that
- COVID-19 is a serious childhood illness.
- The medical literature uniformly supports masking to prevent injury and death from COVID-19.
- Virtual schools are not equal to in-person schools, nor are they the most integrated setting appropriate to the needs of children with disabilities.
WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP?
- A school board meeting will be held on Monday at 7pm in the USC High School theatre. All residents are encouraged to come and show support for universal masking, either by speaking during the public comments section at the end of the meeting, or simply showing up (with a mask on, of course) and allowing the school board to see substantial numbers of people attending in support of universal masking.
- Email the school board and let them know that you support universal masking. The board receives, and reads, many emails from local residents, and those who have pushed the district to remove the school mask mandate have not been shy about writing the board.
- Sign the petition (which over 550 USC residents have already signed) in support of masking in the schools at https://forms.gle/poNL3qmQTnsJGHcE8
- Help fund the drive providing KN-95 masks to staff and students by contacting Lucy Harris Curran (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Get involved with the USC Democratic Committee by contacting Mary McIntyre (email@example.com) or your USC Ward/District Representative.
- Donate to the USC COVID Legal Fund anonymously at: https://www.gofundme.com/f/usc-safe-schools-covid-legal-fund-promitigation