FALSE: DO NOT SHARE
The US COVID-19 lockdown is illegal and unconstitutional.
Misleading. State governments are taking different measures, depending on their constitutions.
This video clip shows two people discussing the ‘lockdown’ social distancing measures used by the US Government to slow the spread of the coronavirus [Sars-CoV-2], saying it is unnecessary, illegal and unconstitutional.
This is misleading, this depends on which social distancing measures are used and each state constitution. The ‘lockdown’ measures have been brought in by the US Government in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 by reducing public social contact. The US federalist system gives states and cities the ‘responsibility for announcing curfews, shelters in place, or other restrictions and safety measures’, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Lindsay Wiley, law professor at the Washington College of Law, told Vox that it depends on which of the different social distancing measures are used: “Mandatory geographic quarantine would probably be unconstitutional”, however “non-mandatory recommendations to shelter in place are legal and can be issued”, and finally orders of “anything in between is generally constitutional if deemed necessary to stop the spread of disease based on available evidence”. States have the authority to ‘enforce isolation and quarantine within their borders’, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The Federal Government can be “advisory only” over social distancing measures according to Polly J. Price, professor of law and public health at Emory University, with restricting travel between states being the only thing within their jurisdiction.
All US individual states have been affected by COVID-19, with the CDC recommending people restrict their movement as much as possible. Countries across the world have imposed varying degrees of social distancing, where some civil liberties are temporarily curtailed to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Whether compliance with the ‘stay at home’ orders is voluntary or legally enforceable is an active debate among legal scholars. Georgia, Oklahoma, Alaska and South Carolina have already allowed some businesses to reopen. Some restrictions imposed by states are being challenged in US courts by business owners who have been forced to close, as they believe it conflicts with the US Constitution protections on the right to associate, assemble, worship and travel. The ‘stay at home’ order in Wisconsin has been successfully challenged in the Supreme Court, challenges have also been made in Michigan and Pennsylvania. We have written previously about the US protest movement against the lockdown measures and claims made by people who say that it is their right to gather to protest against it.