Court: Health Department can order you to quarantine

Published: Nov. 22, 2023 at 12:47 PM EST
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ALBANY, New York (WWNY) - The state Health Department can continue to order you into quarantine in the event of a highly contagious disease like COVID-19, a state court has ruled.

The ruling came from Appellate Division’s Fourth Judicial Department, and it overturns a decision by a state Supreme Court judge last year who decided that giving the Health Department authority to order people into quarantine was unconstitutional.

Republicans vowed to appeal the new court decision from the Appellate Division to the state’s highest court, the Court of Appeals.

“The idea that the State Health Department will lawfully quarantine a New Yorker against their will sounds Soviet,” north country state Senator Mark Walczyk said in a press release.

““The Judiciary has a role to play in checking the Executive and I’m deeply disappointed the Appellate Division missed the opportunity to draw the line at tyranny,” Walczyk said.

“Governor Hochul is falling right behind (former governor Andrew) Cuomo in a lust for power of the state over individual rights.”

The decision by the Appellate Division was based on narrow, technical grounds.

The Albany Times-Union reported the appellate court “found that the GOP officials and the organization did not sufficiently establish why they were so severely harmed, and that the trial court failed to adequately rule on the merits of whether the petitioners had a right to bring the case in the first place.”