KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt called renewed mask mandates in St. Louis City and county “continued government overreach” in a lawsuit filed Monday.
Filed in St. Louis County circuit court, the suit names St. Louis County Executive Sam Page, St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones “and the respective directors of the county and city health departments,” according to a news release.
“There is absolutely no scientific reason to continue to force children to wear a mask in school,” Schmitt said in the release. “Back in May, I filed suit against St. Louis County for continuing to impose such unlawful restrictions, and just three days later, those restrictions were lifted. I will continue to fight this seemingly unending control and intrusion on peoples’ lives — we will not back down.”
Under the new health orders, city and county residents are required to wear masks in public and on public transportation, regardless of vaccination status. Masking requirements were initially lifted on May 14.
The lawsuit alleged that the city and county’s “expanded government power” failed to protect Missourians “and is not based on sound facts and data.”
The mandates were issued, according to the lawsuit, despite the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention not changing its stance that unvaccinated individuals are no longer required to wear masks.
Schmitt also said in the lawsuit that St. Charles County, which did not enact a mask mandate, saw cumulative COVID-19 case and death rates lower than St. Louis city and county.
The attorney general’s office had previously filed a lawsuit against Page earlier in the pandemic.