Court Denies Governor’s Attempt To Stop Maine Health Care Workers Case

Aug 25, 2023

BANGOR, ME – U.S. District Judge Jon Levy has ruled that proceedings on behalf of Maine health care workers in Alicia Lowe, et al., v. Janet Mills, et al, may continue for discovery despite Governor Janet Mills’ attempt to stay the litigation while trying to moot the case. 

Judge Levy wrote, “The Plaintiffs oppose the requested stay, citing this case’s protracted history, which has included multiple appeals to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and the Supreme Court. They fear that a stay, if granted, will last for an extended, indeterminate period because they intend to contest the State Defendants’ promised motion to dismiss.”

The First Circuit Court of Appeals previously reversed the district court’s dismissal involving the seven Maine health care workers based on First Amendment and Equal Protection claims which sent the case back to the lower court for discovery. 

Liberty Counsel represents seven health care workers in Maine who have sincerely held religious beliefs that prevent them from complying with Governor Janet Mills’ unconstitutional shot mandate. 

Their lawsuit against Governor Mills, health officials of the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and five of the state’s largest hospital systems, challenges the Maine law that requires employees of designated Maine health care facilities to be vaccinated against the COVID-19 shot. Governor Mills ordered employers to deny all religious exemptions and ignore the federal employment law known as Title VII that affords employees the right to request reasonable accommodation for their sincere religious beliefs. Governor Mills also threatened to revoke the licenses of all health care employers if they did not abide by her rule. 

Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver said, “This court decision is a positive step forward in this case seeking justice for Maine health care workers. Governor Janet Mills is trying to get away with a hit-and-run where she issued this terrible mandate and now wants to escape responsibility for her actions.” 

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