Civil rights organization issues legal statement on Contra Costa’s requirement churches gather worshippers’ information

May also challenge 12-person or 25% capacity limit for indoor services

Following is the statement from the Center for American Liberty’s Founder Harmeet K. Dhillon concerning the Contra Costa Health Services Order No. HO-COVID19-17. (See related article)

“The Center for American Liberty was contacted recently regarding the June 5, 2020 Order issued from Contra Costa Health Services (Order No. HO-COVID19-17). This Order was concerning for several reasons and we intend to formally reach out to Contra Costa County with an analysis of our concerns.

The June 5, 2020 Order, as presently written, specifically singles out places of worship by requiring that places of worship in Contra Costa County create and preserve a list of persons in attendance, and then disclose such attendance list upon request to the government – a burden that is notably not placed on other establishments in Contra Costa County. Such burden is unconstitutional and is discriminatory on its face.

The California Constitution provides certain inalienable rights, including the right to privacy, to freely assemble, and to enjoy one’s religion- Californians deserve to freely worship and assemble without fear that his or her name and address will end up in a government database. The Center for American Liberty welcomes any official change to this June 5, 2020 Order and will continue to be vigilant about any attempts to discriminate against houses of worship or people of faith in California.

Additionally, the June 5, 2020 Order currently limits houses of worship to a 12 person or 25% limit (whichever is fewer), which is arbitrary, and we will also be monitoring, and potentially challenging, this disparate burden on places of worship and people of faith in Contra Costa County.”

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