PHOENIX — A judge has struck down Republican-passed Arizona laws that block schools from requiring masks and restrict the power of local governments to impose COVID-19 requirements.
The ruling Monday could clear the way for cities and counties to enact mask requirements if it withstands a promised appeal. It comes as the fight over school masks and other COVID-19 restrictions has moved into courtrooms across the U.S. Lawsuits have been filed in at least 14 states either for or against masks in schools.
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends mask-wearing in schools, and children 12 and under are not yet eligible for vaccines.
The sweeping Arizona ruling also struck down several non-virus provisions slipped into the state budget and an entire measure that served as a vehicle for a conservative policy wish list. It included a required investigation of social media companies and stripping the Democratic secretary of state of her duty to defend election laws.