The names of seven Maine well being care staff who had sought to stay nameless whereas difficult Gov. Janet Mills’ vaccine mandate for the coronavirus had been made public Monday after an appellate court docket in Boston ordered that the plaintiffs be recognized.
Alicia Lowe, Debra Chalmers, Jennifer Barbalia, Natalie Salavarria, Nicole Giroux, Garth Berenyi and Adam Jones all had been fired after they sought and had been denied exemptions for non secular causes, in line with the criticism.
The lawsuit doesn’t determine the municipality the place every plaintiff lives as civil complaints filed in federal court docket do.
Maine doesn’t enable an exemption from any kind of vaccine requirement, together with these for college youngsters, for non secular causes.
The governor’s vaccine mandate for well being care staff has been upheld by a federal decide in Maine and by the first U.S. Circuit Courtroom of Appeals in Boston. The U.S. Supreme Courtroom declined to intervene to cease Maine’s legislation from going into impact. Justices allowed the same mandate for well being care staff issued by President Joe Biden to go ahead.
The state started implementing the mandate on Oct. 29. The preliminary criticism was filed in August in U.S. District Courtroom in Bangor. The Portland Press Herald and sister papers efficiently intervened within the case in November difficult the necessity for the plaintiffs to stay nameless.
On Might 31, U.S. District Choose Jon Levy dominated that the plaintiffs’ privateness pursuits weren’t “substantial” sufficient for them to not be named within the lawsuit.
The plaintiffs argued then as they did within the amended criticism itemizing their names, that the mandate violates federal legislation. The Liberty Counsel, a religious-based authorized group, argues that well being care staff are shielded from receiving vaccinations they oppose for non secular causes below the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The coverage additionally violates the First Modification’s Free Train Clause, each complaints mentioned.
The case will now go ahead on its deserves. The subsequent step might be for attorneys within the Maine Legal professional Normal’s workplace to file a solution to the amended criticism.
Along with Mills, Jeanne Lambrew, commissioner for the Maine Division of Well being and Human Providers, and Nirav Shah, director of the Maine Heart for Illness Management and Prevention, had been named as defendants together with a number of well being care companies.