Pritzker not giving up. Yesterday, Kwame Raoul issued an AG opinion that reimagines the meaning of Section 7 of the Emergency Management Agency Act to give the Governor authority to exercise emergency powers for successive 30 day periods to address infectious diseases, contrary to an AG opinion issued in 2001.
Gov Pritzker withdrew his rule to penalize IL businesses who defy his Exec Order, as he did not have the votes in JCAR to uphold his rule. IDPH repeals the Gov’s Emergency Rule.
IMPORTANT: The Illinois Department of Public Health’s Guidance Enforcement of Governor Pritzker’s Exec. Orders 2020-10 & 18 states that if you do not adhere, the DPH has authority pursuant to the Department of Public Health Act (20 ILCS 2035/I.1 et seq.) to order that a place be closed and made off limits to the public “to prevent the probable spread of a dangerously contagious or infectious disease … until such time as the condition can be corrected or the danger to the public health eliminated or reduced in such a manner that no substantial danger to the public’s health any longer exists.”
BUT …. the Public Health Act also provides:
- The Department’s decision to quarantine or isolate (including close) may only be done “on an immediate basis without prior consent or court order if, in the reasonable judgment of the Department, immediate action is required to protect the public from a dangerously contagious or infectious disease.” Sec. 2(c).
- In the event of an immediate order issued without prior consent or court order, the Department shall, as soon as practical, within 48 hours after issuing the order, obtain the consent of the person or owner or file a petition requesting a court order authorizing the isolation or quarantine or closure.” Sec. 2(c).
- “To obtain a court order, the Department, by clear and convincing evidence (A HIGH EVIDENTIARY STANDARD), must prove that the public’s health and welfare are significantly endangered by a person or group of persons that has, that is suspected of having, that has been exposed to, or that is reasonably believed to have been exposed to a dangerously contagious or infectious disease including non-compliant tuberculosis patients or by a place where there is a significant amount of activity likely to spread a dangerously contagious or infectious disease. The Department must also prove that all other reasonable means of correcting the problem have been exhausted and no less restrictive alternative exists.” Sec. 2(c).
- “in determining whether no less restrictive alternative exists, the court shall consider evidence showing that, under the circumstances presented by the case in which an order is sought, quarantine or isolation is the measure provided for in a rule of the Department or in guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the World Health Organization.” Sec 2(c).
- “Persons who are ordered to be isolated or quarantined or who are owners of places that are ordered to be closed and made off limits to the public, shall be given a written notice of such order. The written notice shall additionally include the following: (1) notice of the right to counsel; (2) notice that if the person or owner is indigent, the court will appoint counsel for that person or owner; (3) notice of the reason for the order for isolation, quarantine, or closure; (4) notice of whether the order is an immediate order, and if so, the time frame for the Department to seek consent or to file a petition requesting a court order as set out in this subsection; and (5) notice of the anticipated duration of the isolation, quarantine, or closure.” Sec 2(c).
An April 21 memo from the Illinois Appellate Prosecutor’s Office to the Governor concludes that the Governor’s shut down order and its extension have indeed infringed on citizens’ rights, although that infringement may be justified. The civil rights in question include, but are not limited to due process, freedom of religion and freedom of assembly. Memo concludes that there may be potential civil liability for Illinois, that Article V did not give Pritzker the power to suspend Illinois residents’ constitutional rights, that he does not have the power to organize the militia to suppress insurrection or enforce laws. This explains why Pritzker has left enforcement of the stay-at-home order to the local law enforcement.
The mayor made it illegal to go to church!
Chicago police fine 3 churches for violating stay-at-home order; businessman Willie Wilson says he’ll pay
Businessman Willie Wilson puts on his face mask after speaking at a news conference at the Thompson Center in Chicago demanding Gov. J.B. Pritzker to amend his executive order mandate regarding face masks on May 12, 2020. Following through with Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s promise to take action against churches that violate social distancing rules, the Chicago Police Department issued $500 fines to three separate houses of worship that held services over the weekend, city officials said.Police cited Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church, Philadelphia Romanian Church of God and Metro Praise International for their services.Police also acknowledged temporarily banning parking near churches “as a precaution to prevent planned large gatherings from taking place.”“The Chicago Police Department has been working to ensure full compliance with the (stay-at-home) order,” the department said. “As part of this effort, we continue to ask everyone to help slow the spread of the virus by staying home and practicing social distancing so that once we have begun to recover and reopen, residents can return to their religious services in a safe manner.”Gospel singer and businessman Willie Wilson, meanwhile, released a statement saying he would pay the fines. Wilson ran for mayor in 2019 and won several African American wards in the election’s first round, then endorsed Lightfoot against Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle.Their relationship frayed last year, however, and he’s been an outspoken critic of Lightfoot and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s handling of the stay-at-home order for churches.“The governor and mayor continue to trample on our constitutional rights while hiding behind a stay-at-home order that treats the church as non-essential,” he said in a statement.On Monday, Lightfoot said the city would be fining churches that had more people than allowed under the statewide stay-at-home order during the weekend.Lightfoot spent last week asking churches to abide by social distancing rules and warning that she would take action against churches that refused.But on Sunday, hundreds of people defied Pritzker’s stay-at-home order to attend church anyway, and the mayor’s office warned that violators may be cited after review.📷Breaking News Newsletter
The dispute kicked off a week ago after Metro Praise International Church on the Northwest Side opened its doors for in-person services in an act that church officials described as “passive resistance” to Pritzker’s ongoing stay-at-home order.That defiance led Lightfoot to tweet, “It doesn’t matter who you are or what you’re doing. When you gather like this, you are putting yourself and your loved ones in serious danger.”Wilson spoke at Philadelphia Romanian Church of God over the weekend.“I tell everybody this year, wherever I go, practice your social distancing, do what the signs say, do what the laws say, but don’t ever put the law before God,” Wilson said during the services.
I have good news to share:
The experts have indicated we can build on our plan to bring back more activities faster, as long as Illinoisans continue to do as we have, adhering to precautions & safety measures to keep each other safe.
The epidemiologists now believe that restaurants can open for outdoor seating when Phase 3 begins, likely for everyone just 9 days from now.
With the right restrictions – tables six feet apart and away from sidewalks, masks and distancing measures for staff, and other precautions – the experts believe these services can open at a risk comparable to other outdoor activities and give businesses a much-needed boost.
Phase 3 also permits all gatherings – not just essential ones – of 10 people or fewer. That means if you want to go enjoy a picnic in the park or a walk with 9 other people, you can – just remember to wear a mask or a face covering when social distance can’t be maintained.
Newly allowed in Phase 3:
Boating or camping with up to ten people is welcome.
Indoor & outdoor tennis facilities with IDPH safety precautions & capacity limits.
Golf courses can allow foursomes out on the same tee times.
All state parks can reopen with staffing and safety measures.
As we’ve already laid out: Personal care services, one-on-one personal training in indoor facilities and outdoor fitness classes of up to ten people can take place with safety precautions.
All retail stores – basically any store that wasn’t already open as an essential business – can choose to open their doors to in-person shopping with IDPH safety precautions and capacity limits in place.
In the coming days, we’ll be releasing formal industry-specific guidance developed in consultation with business owners and employees, particularly around workplaces and child care.
I want to offer just a note of concern that I hope everyone will take to heart:
The virus has not gone away.
We have followed the science and we’re succeeding, but we can’t let up now.
We’ve come too far and made so much progress because we’ve kept social distance, worn face coverings in public, washed our hands frequently, and taken care of our most vulnerable to the best of our ability.
We must persevere.