Tallahassee, Florida – On Wednesday state and national pediatrics groups supported a request for a federal appeals court to block Gov. Ron DeSantis’ executive order that seeks to prevent school mask requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Along with the request Wednesday, the pediatrician groups filed the proposed brief supporting the injunction.
“Over the past 18 months, (the groups) have worked ceaselessly to evaluate the dangers of COVID-19 and potential public health measures for reducing its deadly spread,” the proposed brief said.
“The AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) has conducted a comprehensive review of the medical literature to determine what public health measures can effectively reduce the grave risk that COVID-19 poses to … children.
The result, and the experiences of the AAP’s and FLAAP’s (the Florida chapter’s) front-line pediatric practitioners, prove beyond any doubt that universal mask policies are safe, effective, and necessary.”
The lawsuit contends that children with disabilities face increased risks from COVID-19 and that the state’s move to prevent mask requirements has violated the Americans with Disabilities Act and another law, the Rehabilitation Act, that protects the rights of people with disabilities.
According to DeSantis, parents should be able to decide whether children wear masks, and the state Department of Education is pursuing financial penalties against districts that restrict the ability of parents to opt-out of mask mandates.
In his Sept. 15 ruling, Moore said the plaintiffs have different circumstances, requiring “unique solutions