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Nine flight attendants representing six airlines are suing the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention over the air travel mask mandate, claiming masks are ineffective, cause breathing trouble, and that the policy is difficult to enforce.
The suit, filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado on Thursday, claims that the mandate raises constitutional concerns and states that by “mandating masks for all American travelers and employees in the transportation sector, the defendants have acted without statutory authorization or following the rulemaking process required by the Administrative Procedure Act.”
Ten pilots with four airlines on March 15 filed a similar lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
The mask mandate went into effect on Feb. 1, 2021, and was set to expire three months later, but has been extended several times. The new expiration date is April 18.
The suit calls the mandate “an illegal and unconstitutional exercise of executive authority.”
It also argues that the CDC “ignored countless scientific and medical studies and articles showing that face masks are totally ineffective in reducing coronavirus spread but are harmful to human health in at least 68 ways” and that “as flight attendants for major airlines, we have seen up close and personal the chaos in the sky,” as passengers refuse to comply at times.
The plaintiffs also provided sworn declarations, stating that “face masks cause us numerous health problems including lightheadedness, dizziness, chest pain, overheating, perspiration, irritation, increase in stress, sore throat, fatigue, limited breathing capacity, reduced circulation in the limbs, headaches, weakened immune system, nausea, lung pain, brain fog, anxiety, inflammatory response, multiple upper respiratory disturbances, inflammation, sinus infection, cognitive dysfunction, malaise, coughing, and wheezing.”
The CDC has not responded to the suits.
A flight attendant is entitled to workers compensation for the injury she sustained while riding a shuttle between an employee parking lot and an airport terminal, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s Western District in Pittsburgh held Wednesday.