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Coronavirus

Religious Schools Sue Michigan, Arguing Whitmer’s COVID-19 Restrictions Violate 1st Amendment

December 8, 2020

LANSING, Mich. — Nonpublic schools sued after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration extended a coronavirus order that prevents in-person instruction at Michigan high schools, saying it violates the First Amendment right to practice religion.

The federal lawsuit, filed in Michigan’s Western District late Monday, was brought by a group representing more than 400 nonpublic schools across the state, as well as three Catholic high schools and 11 parents. The state health department on Monday lengthened COVID-19 restrictions by 12 days, through Dec. 20. The order took effect Nov. 18 and applies to public high schools and all colleges and universities.

The plaintiffs include Lansing Catholic High School, Father Gabriel Richard High School in Ann Arbor and Everest Collegiate Academy in Clarkston. They say they can safely provide face-to-face learning and sought an injunction to block enforcement of the order.

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