Illinois teachers sue Pritzker over COVID-19 school mandates

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A class action lawsuit filed by 88 Illinois teachers seeks to block Governor JB Pritzker’s COVID-19 warrants over injections, tests and vaccinations for school staff.

A class action lawsuit was filed Dec. 13 by 88 teachers and school staff across Illinois in opposition to Governor JB Pritzker’s COVID-19 school warrants over vaccination, testing and masks.

The lawsuit naming 22 different school districts, the Illinois Department of Public Health, the Illinois State Board of Education and the governor as defendants seeks an emergency injunction blocking the demands of Pritzker health for school personnel.

The challenge in Sangamon County Circuit Court argues that the vaccination and testing program violates state health-care conscience law.

“Educators oppose the vaccination and the coronavirus test because the two health services violate their moral conscience,” says the trial. “If educators oppose these proposed health services, the law prohibits the accused from discriminating against them. “

Among the plaintiffs is teacher Kadence Koen who made national headlines in November for refusing to show proof of vaccination and test results for weeks in her home district.

After Springfield District 186 gave Koen an ultimatum – either to comply with warrants or lose her job – she revealed that she received the vaccine months before it was required.

“My stance throughout the process has been anti-mandate,” Koen told WMAY last month. “I am against the idea that one man can tell an entire population what to do with regard to their medical decisions.”

District 186 teacher Kimberly Smoot is also a complainant. Smoot said she adheres to regular weekly testing but is concerned about conceding personal freedoms in the name of public safety.

“We have to test first, then you take away the possibility of testing and getting us vaccinated,” Smoot said.

“Then that’s not enough and we have to get a booster according to your schedule. When we give up our rights, no matter how little by little, we will never get them back, ”said Smoot.

On November 8, the governor signed an amendment to Illinois’ decades-old healthcare conscience law that allows employers to discipline employees for refusing to comply with COVID rules -19. The amendment was intended to restrict the law and deny it as a legal argument to groups such as the 88 teachers, but the changes do not take effect until June 1, 2022.

The bill and its various proposed amendments have met with opposition from more than 86,000 Illinois.

Pritzker justified the change by clarifying “the legislative intent of the Health Care Right of Conscience Act so that it cannot be abused or misinterpreted to compromise workplace safety.”


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