(The Center Square) – Tennessee is one of 24 states suing to block the Biden administration's COVID-19 mandates in Head Start programs.
The lawsuit aims to stop the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Administration for Children and Families from making toddlers wear masks and requiring staff and volunteers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Jan. 31.
“We have consistently opposed mandates in the context of education, defending state statutes passed by our General Assembly,” Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery said. “This challenge is consistent with our past positions, especially in the context of education. Again, these are issues best prescribed by states who are responsible for the safety and health of their citizens and who are most familiar with circumstances facing educators. The ‘one size fits all’ approach is not workable.”
The vaccination requirement includes teachers, contractors and volunteers in the program.
The lawsuit claims a mandate related to Head Start is beyond the authority of the Executive Branch and is against the law, violating the Administrative Procedure Act’s (APA) Notice-and-Comment Requirement, the Congressional Review Act, the Nondelegation Doctrine, the Tenth Amendment, the Anti-Commandeering Doctrine, the Spending Clause and the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act of 1999.
Other states included in the lawsuit are Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming, and West Virginia.
Tennessee also has been involved in other lawsuits against federal vaccination and mask mandates, joining Kentucky and Ohio in a federal contractor lawsuit that led to a temporary injunction.
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