Missouri Hair Braiders

Pertinacious Tom

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In the course of living, and renting, and applying for jobs, even misdemeanants find some pretty serious repercussions.
But not, apparently, if they want to be barbers. Because it's more important that the chick putting makeup on your face be of good moral character than the guy working a razor on your neck. Or something.

 

Pertinacious Tom

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Ferries, Privileges and Immunities Headed to 9th Circuit
 

Too bad they couldn't find credible legal representation but I wish them well.
That didn't go well, so the Courtney brothers are giving the Supreme Court a try. Regrettably, they continue to have nutjob legal representation.
 

Jim and Cliff’s case hinges on the interpretation of a constitutional provision and a landmark precedent that are well-known to constitutional scholars: the Privileges or Immunities Clause of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment and the Slaughter-House Cases, an 1873 decision in which the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the power of states to create monopolies in certain industries. But, interestingly, in that case, the justices held that among the rights (known then as “privileges or immunities”) that states have to respect is the “right to use the navigable waters of the United States”—the very right at the heart of Jim and Cliff’s case and their private boat service.

According to the State of Washington and the 9th Circuit, however, that right is essentially meaningless. Washington has applied its so-called “public convenience and necessity” requirement to block the Courtneys even from shuttling lodging customers to and from Cliff’s own ranch in Stehekin, at the far end of Lake Chelan. (The public convenience and necessity requirement is essentially a trial held by the state licensing board that allows existing service providers to veto potential competitors, saying no new service providers are “necessary”—the equivalent of allowing McDonald’s to veto the building of a Burger King in the same market.)

...

“The 9th Circuit’s decision renders meaningless a right that the U.S. Supreme Court has said all Americans possess by virtue of their national citizenship,” said Michael Bindas, senior nutjob with the Institute for Justice. “Worse, it flouts the very constitutional provision that protects that right. When the Privileges or Immunities Clause says that ‘No state . . . shall abridge’ rights of national citizenship, it actually means ‘No state’—including one’s own.”

 

Pertinacious Tom

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Nutjobs try to turn California into Somalia
 

Fernando Herrera served in one of California’s inmate fire camps. He credits the experience with helping him turn his life around. Even so, Fernando is unable to get certified as a first responder because of his record. Now, Fernando is joining an existing lawsuit from the Institute for Justice (IJ) that challenges California’s ban on EMT certification for people with felony convictions.

“I made mistakes as a teenager and I regret the things I did,” said Fernando. “But serving in the fire camps showed me that I can give back to my community. Unfortunately, California says I can never get certified as an EMT, even though I was good enough to be a first responder while in prison.”

Fernando grew up in Marysville, California, and got involved with what he calls the “street lifestyle” when he was 14. While in detention, Fernando and his friends attacked another boy they had previously assaulted. Prosecutors threatened a host of charges related to the fight and previous incidents, prompting Fernando to take a plea deal that admitted to two adult felonies.

...

California categorically bans anyone with two or more felonies from ever applying for an EMT certification. EMTs are not paramedics and the certification does not grant one the right to drive ambulances or enter homes. Instead, it is a basic certification proving that an individual can administer non-invasive lifesaving techniques such as CPR. More than 60,000 Californians are certified EMTs and they work in a diverse variety of careers.

“California wants to exclude Fernando for the rest of his life because of things he did when he was 14 and 15,” said IJ Nutjob Andrew Ward. “Fernando served his time and now he wants to serve the public. California should let him.”

...

Fernando and current plaintiff Dario Gurrola were two of the thousands of inmates that California annually employs at fire camps across the state. Non-violent, minimal-custody inmates are trained to work on fire lines and perform forest raking and community service projects that reduce the threat of fires and flooding. Volunteers at the camps receive the same training as seasonal firefighters and do much of the same work.
I suspect that what Fernando Herrera calls the "street lifestyle" is what I would call the "stupid drug war lifestyle."

A good first step toward getting convicted felons to reintegrate into society would be letting them reintegrate into society.

 

Pertinacious Tom

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This thread is overdue for some Koch-$pon$ored Biden Cheerleading.

Unlike over a hundred cheerleading articles for the orange one, in this case they actually are cheering.
 

...

"Put an end to unnecessary occupational licensing requirements," Biden's campaign website promises, though you have to scroll through a lot of blather about evil corporations and saintly unions to find it. "While licensing is important in some occupations to protect consumers, in many occupations licensing does nothing but thwart economic opportunity. If licensed workers choose to move to new states for higher-paying jobs, they often have to get certified all over again."

Biden isn't a newcomer to occupational licensing reform, either; it's a theme he's maintained through the years and during the course of his presidential campaign.

"Why should someone who braids hair have to get 600 hours of training? It makes no sense," he told a union audience in Pittsburgh last year. "They're making it harder and harder in a whole range of professions, all to keep competition down."

Extra credit to the guy for making the case to organized labor, which isn't generally enthusiastic about reducing barriers to entry for workers.

...

So, good for Joe Biden for championing a cause that helps people, makes the country freer, and has a chance to win support from partisans of all stripes. Let's hope he spends a lot of time and energy pushing this proposal. Occupational licensing reform may be a rare treasure bobbing in the current political cesspool, but that gives us a place to start.
I'm glad to see his position on the issue has been consistently good for some time, but I don't share the hope that he wastes a lot of time on it. As this thread and that article make clear, these are state and local laws over which the President has little control. I just hope he does what little he can.

 

Pertinacious Tom

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Occupational speech is related to occupational licensing, so I guess this goes in this thread.

A win for first amendment protection of commercial speech
 

Today, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recognized that restricting the online pet advice of Brownsville, Texas, veterinarian Dr. Ron Hines implicated his First Amendment rights, reversing a lower court ruling that occupational speech is not protected by the First Amendment. Dr. Hines now has the opportunity to go back down to the trial court and prove the First Amendment violation. Today’s decision has broad implications for other professionals who want to meet virtually with clients, especially in the midst of COVID-19.

Dr. Hines gave online advice to pet owners all across the world from 2002 to 2012, until the Texas State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners said his advice was illegal—not because it harmed an animal or was inaccurate, but because Texas prohibits veterinarians from sharing their expertise with pet owners without first examining their pets in person. Dr. Hines teamed up with the Institute for Justice (IJ) in 2013 to challenge that restriction but the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in 2015 that his advice was regulated by occupational licensure and hence not protected by the First Amendment. After a landmark 2018 Supreme Court decision (NIFLA v. Becerra) rejected the so-called “professional speech doctrine,” which excluded occupational speech from the First Amendment, Dr. Hines again partnered with IJ in 2018 to vindicate his right to free speech. Today’s ruling enshrines constitutional protection to Americans who want to give advice online without being punished for it.

IJ Senior Nutjob Jeff Rowes said: “Today’s decision is the latest in a unanimous string of federal appellate decisions ruling that the First Amendment protects the occupational speech of workers just as it protects other kinds of speech.

...
I'm glad that Dr. Hines won.

 
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Pertinacious Tom

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South Padre Island Becoming Somalia
 

In a sweeping victory for economic liberty, Judge Arturo Cisneros Nelson of the Cameron County District Court struck down South Padre Island’s anti-competitive food truck permit cap and restaurant-permission scheme. The district court ruled that the city violated the Texas Constitution when it forced food truck owners to get permission from local restaurant owners before being eligible for a food truck permit, and by making it illegal for more than twelve food trucks to open for business on the island.

The Institute for Justice (“IJ”) challenged both anti-competitive restrictions on behalf of food truck owner SurfVive, a local nonprofit spearheaded by Erica Lerma, and the Brownsville-based Chile de Árbol food truck operated by brothers Anubis and Adonai Avalos. Both food trucks were forced to the sidelines and could not operate under the city’s permitting scheme.

“This is a victory under the Texas Constitution for entrepreneurs across Texas,” said Arif Panju, Managing Nutjob of IJ’s Texas Office. “The government cannot pass laws to protect politically connected insiders from competition— operating a small business in the current climate is challenging enough without the government picking winners and losers.”

...



 

Pertinacious Tom

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A win for first amendment protection of commercial speech
 

Today, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recognized that restricting the online pet advice of Brownsville, Texas, veterinarian Dr. Ron Hines implicated his First Amendment rights, reversing a lower court ruling that occupational speech is not protected by the First Amendment. Dr. Hines now has the opportunity to go back down to the trial court and prove the First Amendment violation. Today’s decision has broad implications for other professionals who want to meet virtually with clients, especially in the midst of COVID-19.
Professionals like Elizabeth Brokamp, for example.
 

As the COVID-19 pandemic fell on the greater Washington, D.C., area, professional counselor Elizabeth Brokamp quickly shifted her practice online. Yet she ran into a problem: When potential clients living in the District of Columbia contacted her to begin counseling, she was forced to turn them away because she is licensed in Virginia, but not the District.

If not for the pandemic, clients in the District could easily drive to meet with Elizabeth in person in the Virginia suburbs. Elizabeth is licensed in Virginia, and it would be entirely legal for her to see District residents face-to-face. But when Elizabeth asked District regulators if she could see new clients via teletherapy, regulators told her she would be cited if she tried. Now, Elizabeth is teaming up with the Institute for Justice (IJ) to sue the District for her right to counsel new clients by teletherapy.

“Counselors use words—they talk to people about their emotions and help them feel better,” said IJ Senior Nutjob Rob Johnson. “Literally all Elizabeth wants to do in D.C. is talk over the internet. And under the First Amendment, the government cannot prohibit unauthorized talking.”

...

 

Pertinacious Tom

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Washington DC Becoming Somalia
 

The Council of the District of Columbia unanimously passed a bill Tuesday that will make it much easier for people with criminal records to become licensed in their chosen field. Previously, the District had below-average protections for ex-offenders seeking licenses to work, receiving a C- in a recent report by the Institute for Justice, Barred from Working. But thanks to the bill passed this week, that grade will soar to an A-, with the District’s laws the best in the nation, second only to Indiana. 

“An honest living is one of the best ways to prevent re-offending. But strict occupational licensing requirements make it harder for ex-offenders to find work,” said IJ Activism Policy Nutjob Chad Reese, who submitted testimony in favor of the bill. “This bill will eliminate many licensing barriers that have little basis in common sense and unfairly deny countless Americans looking for a fresh start.”

...

 

Pertinacious Tom

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Vizaline got a consent agreement allowing them to doodle on satellite images.
 

Today, the real estate analytics firm Vizaline is free to legally operate in Mississippi following the approval of a consent agreement by a Mississippi state court. Vizaline is a technology start-up located in Mississippi that uses public data to draw lines on satellite photos showing property boundaries. This information is used by banks to better understand their property portfolios. Less uncertainty means safer loans, safer banks and safer customers. In 2017, the Mississippi Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Surveyors sued Vizaline for “unlicensed surveying.” In response, Vizaline sued the Board for violating its First Amendment rights, because using existing information to create new information is protected speech. The consent agreement was reached following a ruling from the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals saying that occupational licensing regimes are not exempt from First Amendment protections. Because the consent agreement recognizes that the services Vizaline is providing are legal, Vizaline has agreed to drop its First Amendment lawsuit.

...

The consent agreement recognizes that what Vizaline does—use public data to draw property descriptions on satellite photos—is not the practice of surveying and does not require a surveyor license. Vizaline’s technology is similar to services featured in Google Maps and Zillow.

“Using public data to draw lines on satellite photos is not surveying, it’s free speech,” said IJ Senior Nutjob Paul Avelar. “You don’t need the government’s permission to use information to create new information and sell it to willing customers. The consent agreement means that Vizaline can continue to do what it has always done, free from threats from the Board.”

In February 2020, the 5th Circuit unanimously ruled in the case that “Mississippi’s surveyor requirements are not wholly exempt from First Amendment scrutiny simply because they are part of an occupational-licensing regime.” That decision turned on a major 2018 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court in NIFLA v. Becerra, which ruled that “professional speech”—speech subject to licensing requirements—is not exempt from the protection of the First Amendment. The 5th Circuit confirmed that the NIFLA decision overruled prior 5th Circuit case law instituting a problematic “professional speech doctrine,” which exempted professional speech from First Amendment protection. The 5th Circuit’s decision in Vizaline has since been used to protect the free speech rights of a Texas veterinarian, Dr. Ronald Hines, in his lawsuit against the Texas State Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners.

The agreement has three key components:

  • The Board acknowledges that Vizaline has not held itself out as surveyor service.
  • The Board recognizes that Vizaline’s reports are not authoritative surveys.
  • The Board agrees that using descriptions from property deeds to draw lines on a satellite images representing property boundaries is not surveying as defined by law.

...
I suspect that if The Board members asked a real surveyor to do a real survey and got back a satellite image with lines plunked down on it, they would have understood that they were ripped off and that was not a survey. Pretending to fail to grasp that simple truth was convenient for protecting license holders but didn't hold up in court, thankfully. One more step on the road to becoming Somalia!

 

Pertinacious Tom

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Ferries, Privileges and Immunities Headed to 9th Circuit
 

Too bad they couldn't find credible legal representation but I wish them well.
And now the Supreme Court is being asked to consider Courtney v Danner

The idea that an existing ferry boat business can veto the arrival of competition seems wrong to me.
 

In The Slaughter-House Cases (1873), the U.S. Supreme Court left for dead the Privileges or Immunities Clause of the 14th Amendment. Taking a page from The Princess Bride, a new constitutional case is asking the Court to recognize that the clause "is only mostly dead."

The case is Courtney v. Danner. At issue is one Washington state family's 23-year odyssey to secure the right to ferry customers to and from its ranch via the waters of Lake Chelan. State law requires would-be ferry operators to first obtain a certificate declaring the "public convenience and necessity" of their enterprise. As part of that process, would-be operators must show that any existing ferry business in the area "has not objected to the issuance of the certificate as prayed for." In other words, a settled firm gets to veto the arrival of any new competitor.

Here's how the Slaughter-House decision factors in. In that 1873 ruling, the Supreme Court rejected the arguments of a group of Louisiana butchers who claimed that a state law granting monopoly powers to a slaughterhouse corporation deprived them of their right to earn a living, one of the privileges or immunities of U.S. citizenship secured against state infringement by the recently ratified 14th Amendment.

Writing for the 5–4 majority, Justice Samuel Miller held that the Privileges or Immunities Clause placed virtually no limits on state power and did virtually nothing to protect individual rights from state infringement. To hold otherwise, he wrote, would make the Supreme Court "a perpetual censor upon all legislation of the states." The butchers were out of luck.

Miller's Slaughter-House opinion did, however, recognize a very small handful of rights that the 14th Amendment does protect. Among them was the "right to use the navigable waters of the United States."

Lake Chelan is a federally designated navigable water of the United States, which means that the Courtneys have a clear constitutional case to make against Washington's anti-competitive stance and have the Slaughter-House precedent—as problematic as it is—squarely on their side.

"The Courtneys have been trying for nearly a quarter century to exercise their right to use the navigable waters of the United States, and the State of Washington has prevented them from doing so at every turn," notes a petition seeking review filed by the Courtneys and their nutjobs at the Institute for Justice.

...

 

Pertinacious Tom

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Uh oh. The orchestrated chorus of amici is assembling.
 

...

In three briefs, a group of historians, a coalition of law professors, and Americans for Prosperity Foundation highlighted the errors of the 9th Circuit’s decision and urged the Supreme Court to review it.

  • A group of eminent historians whose research and scholarly interests focus on African-American history, particularly in the antebellum South, submitted a brief providing historical context to inform the original understanding of what it meant to “use” the “navigable waters of the United States” around the time of the Fourteenth Amendment’s ratification. The historians—Jeffrey Bolster (University of New Hampshire, emeritus), Melvin Patrick Ely (College of William & Mary), and Michael Schoeppner (University of Maine, Farmington)—document the importance of the navigable waters to free blacks and slaves in the period leading up to the Civil War, as well as the widespread efforts by southern governments to restrict their use of those waters in both interstate and intrastate pursuits. The historical evidence, the brief notes, “undercuts the Ninth Circuit’s holding that the Privileges or Immunities Clause protects only against infringements on interstate uses of the navigable waters.”
  • A group of distinguished law professors—Richard Aynes (University of Akron School of Law, emeritus), James Ely (Vanderbilt University Law School, emeritus), Richard Epstein (New York University School of Law), Christopher Green (University of Mississippi School of Law), Michael Lawrence (Michigan State University College of Law), and Rebecca Zietlow (University of Toledo College of Law)—submitted a brief making clear that when the Privileges or Immunities Clause declares that “No State . . . shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States,” it actually means “No State,” including one’s own. The 9th Circuit’s contrary conclusion—which, the brief demonstrates, flies in the face of U.S. Supreme Court precedent, history, and the unanimous consensus of legal scholars—“has cudgeled the Privileges or Immunities Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to within an inch of its life.”
  • Americans for Prosperity Foundation submitted a brief tracing the historical origins of the right to use the navigable waters, examining the basis for its protection as a right of national, rather than state, citizenship, and dispelling the 9th Circuit’s view that the Commerce Clause constrains the scope of the right. The brief urges the Supreme Court to review the lower court’s decision in order to “protect the right of the people to use the nations’ navigable waterways and unwind the conflation of limits on congressional power and protection of individual rights wrought by the Ninth Circuit.”

“The Slaughter-House Cases set a horrible precedent, but one thing it got right was that the Privileges or Immunities Clause protects every American’s right to use the navigable waters of the United States. Yet, now, the 9th Circuit has taken that away, too,” said Scott Bullock, president and general nutjob for the Institute for Justice. “We urge the Court to take up the Courtneys’ case and restore this important right to all Americans.”

 

Pertinacious Tom

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Lawsuit to force Montana to become Somalia
 

...

Montana’s ban is not the only example of one group using the power of government to keep another group from competing in the medical field. In 2019, IJ challenged a similar doctor-dispensing ban in Texas, where doctors are prohibited from dispensing unless they work in certain “rural” areas more than 15 miles from a pharmacy.
The related effort to force Texas to become Somalia lost, now being appealed
 

Yesterday, the Travis County District Court upheld Texas’s ban on doctor dispensing. Forty-four states and the District of Columbia allow doctors to dispense medicine to patients in their offices and to recover their costs. But in Texas, doctors could lose their licenses for doing so. The court’s ruling leaves that ban in place. The Institute for Justice (IJ) will appeal the decision.

...

Texas’s ban isn’t about protecting patients. Indeed, the vast majority of states, the American Medical Association and the Texas Medical Association embrace the practice of doctor dispensing, and research confirms that doctors and pharmacies are equally safe when dispensing. Instead, the law simply protects pharmacies from competition.

Because the Texas Constitution requires that laws like the dispensing ban must meaningfully benefit the public, rather than favored market groups, Dr. Garrett’s lawsuit seeks to have the ban declared unconstitutional. With help from IJ, Dr. Garrett will appeal the decision.

“Government power should be used to benefit the public. A law that prevents doctors from helping their patients just to protect pharmacies’ bottom lines violates that basic principle,” said IJ Attorney Josh Windham, lead nutjob on the case. “We expect the court to recognize that on appeal.”





 

Pertinacious Tom

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In Michigan to be a Barber

Applicants for a barber license must be at least 17 years of age, satisfactorily complete 1,800 hours of coursework at a licensed barber college, pass an examination approved by the board and the department, must have completed at least the tenth grade of school or possess an equivalent education, and be of good moral character.
Good news on that last one, as Michigan takes a step toward becoming Somalia
 

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed a package of bills Monday that will make it much easier for people with criminal records to become licensed in their chosen field. By imposing significant costs in terms of time and money, licensing laws often create substantial hurdles to worker mobility and prisoner reentry. For instance, the average license for lower- and middle-income occupations in Michigan requires paying $242 in fees, finishing 255 days of training and experience, and passing two exams.

The bill package (HB 4888-4492) targets Michigan’s requirement that applicants must have “good moral character” in order to obtain occupational licenses–an often vague and arbitrary standard. Under the reform, licensing boards will only be able to disqualify applicants for lacking good moral character if they have been convicted of a felony that has a “direct and specific relationship” to the license sought or poses a “demonstrable risk to public safety.” Boards will also be required to consider an applicant’s evidence of rehabilitation, their employment history, any testimonials on their behalf, as well as the time elapsed since the crime was committed. 

...

“An honest living is one of the best ways to prevent re-offending. But strict occupational licensing requirements make it harder for ex-offenders to find work,” said IJ Legislative Nutjob Nick Sibilla, who authored the report. “These bills will eliminate many licensing barriers that have little basis in common sense and unfairly deny countless Michiganders looking for a fresh start.”



 

Pertinacious Tom

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Washington DC Becoming Somalia

Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser signed a bill that will make it much easier for people with criminal records to become licensed in their chosen field. Previously, the District had below-average protections for ex-offenders seeking licenses to work, receiving a C- in a recent report by the Institute for Justice, Barred from Working. But thanks to the bill signed this week, that grade will soar to an A-, with the District’s laws the best in the nation, second only to Indiana.

“An honest living is one of the best ways to prevent re-offending. But strict occupational licensing requirements make it harder for ex-offenders to find work,” said IJ Activism Policy Nutjob Chad Reese, who submitted testimony in favor of the bill. “This bill will eliminate many licensing barriers that have little basis in common sense and unfairly deny countless Americans looking for a fresh start.”

...



 

Pertinacious Tom

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And now the Supreme Court is being asked to consider Courtney v Danner

The idea that an existing ferry boat business can veto the arrival of competition seems wrong to me.
 
SCOTUS does not want to hear about it.

Slaughter-House was a terrible opinion, but it was correct in recognizing that inherent in the citizenship of every American is the right to use the nation’s navigable waters,” said Michael Bindas, IJ Senior Nutjob and lead counsel for the Courtneys.  “Unfortunately, the Supreme Court refused to enforce that right today.  Nevertheless, the Institute for Justice remains steadfastly committed to revitalizing the Privileges or Immunities Clause—to restoring it to its rightful place as the cornerstone of the Fourteenth Amendment and the primary constitutional bulwark of economic liberty.”
This despite

So maybe the Supreme Court is not so afraid of an orchestrated chorus of amici after all. Oh well, privileges and immunities will remain hypothetical but I'm glad nutjobs are at least trying to change that situation.

 

Pertinacious Tom

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On the good news front, Ohio is becoming Somalia
 

Gov. Mike DeWine signed legislation Saturday (HB 263) that will make it much easier for Ohioans with criminal records to become licensed in their chosen field. Previously, the Buckeye State had scant protections for ex-offenders seeking licenses to work, receiving a D- in a recent report by the Institute for Justice, Barred from Working. Now that grade will soar to an A-.

“An honest living is one of the best ways to prevent re-offending. But strict occupational licensing requirements make it harder for ex-offenders to find work,” said IJ Nutjob and Barred from Working author Nick Sibilla

...

 

Pertinacious Tom

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District court saves DC from becoming Somalia but the decision is being appealed.
 

Late Wednesday, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia dismissed a lawsuit filed by two day care providers and a D.C. parent alongside the Institute for Justice (IJ) challenging a requirement by Washington, D.C. regulators in the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) that day care providers obtain a college degree or look for another job.

When OSSE enacted the regulations in 2016, it did not cite any specific research to support its college requirement, but an OSSE official said the regulations were inspired by a 2015 report by the National Academies. That report actually stated that there is no empirical support for requiring day care providers to get college degrees and that there are many negative consequences in doing so. For example, the requirement threatens to put many lower-income women, often immigrants, out of work unless they upend their lives to obtain a college degree that adds nothing to their ability to care for children.

...

“These regulations only serve to drive up the cost of child care in the District, when it’s already the most expensive in the country,” said IJ Nutjob Renée Flaherty. “The degree requirement is not just a bad idea. The District’s arbitrary and irrational requirement violates day care providers’ right to earn an honest living guaranteed by the 5th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. We will be appealing the district court’s decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.”

 
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