After Barbara Ferrer, the Ph.D. in social work who heads the Los Angeles Department of Public Health, threatened to impose an indoor masking mandate on the county’s ten million residents, the Alliance of Los Angeles County Parents filed a lawsuit against the department, Ferrer and Health Officer Dr. Muntu Davis for violating the equal protection clause. It states that the suit:
The incongruity between the County’s decision to impose such a dramatic restriction on its residents and the remarks of the LAC+USC physicians explaining the waning risks of COVID and absence of high hospitalization due to COVID demonstrates decision-making by County Public Health that is beyond the bounds of reason, arbitrary, capricious, and entirely lacking in evidentiary support.
Julie Hamill is the group’s leader, and she is also a candidate for school board. On its website, the Alliance explains its mission:
Alliance of Los Angeles County Parents was formed to represent the rights of Los Angeles County kids who are subject to restrictive COVID-19 orders by their local schools, County of Los Angeles and State of California.
The entire petition can be accessed from the tweet of her below.
In the name of @LACountyParentsI have filed a complaint and a petition to writ mandate against @lapublichealthFerrer and Davis. It is impossible to live as this. We will seek a TRO immediately if she continues with Friday’s new mask mandate. https://t.co/zVZL6s50AU
— Julie Hamill (@hamill_law) July 27, 2022
The Alliance filed the writ and proceeded to serve the department—but Ferrer and Davis decided to avoid process servers and went so far as to refuse to even acknowledge the suit. This should come as no surprise, given the lack of access and transparency they’ve displayed to media, concerned citizens, and even the Board of Supervisors.
Check out the latest update on the Alliance of LA County Parents lawsuit @lapublichealthThey accepted the service, but neither county counsel nor they will accept it for Davis or Ferrer. This is very bizarre and unethical behavior. The process server now has to stake out their homes. This is something that I don’t like.
— Julie Hamill (@hamill_law) August 2, 2022
Hours after calling out the lack of response, it appeared that LA County decided to use taxpayer money for the defense—and lots of it. They’ve hired Sheppard Mullin, a top-tier firm, instead of using the LA County Counsel. In 2007, the attorney rate at this firm was $695. We can only imagine where they stand now. Others claim they are higher. partner ratesNow hovering around $1500 per hour
Update: This tweet has been updated. I have received an email from @SheppardMullin. @lapublichealthSpending your tax money to help defend County Ferrer, Davis and Davis is a waste of tax money. There is no need to stake out now. https://t.co/oa1WFG4bB2
— Julie Hamill (@hamill_law) August 3, 2022
Much like how Barbara Ferrer was hell-bent on reimposing an indoor mask mandate until revelations about her daughter’s conflict of interest in a shoddy mask “study,” the video of County USC Medical Center doctors speaking the truthConcerning the absence of Covid hospitalizations as well as public pressure on Board of Supervisors. modus operandiIt is clear that reality can be evaded beyond the point of reason.
To find out why an outside firm was retained to represent the county’s employees and 368 lawyers listed in Transparent California 2021 database, I reached the County Counsel. The one public phone number was not answered by anyone. I also sent them an email asking for their comments. If they reply, we will update the story.
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors’ meeting agendas are regularly filled with news of lawsuits they’ve chosen to settle. Given the lack of oversight they’ve displayed with the Department of Public Health and their bloated county counsel’s office’s disregard for citizens, it’s no surprise.
We’ve covered Ferrer’s misdeeds extensively at RedState; you can catch up on it all here. I believe Ferrer decided not to reinstate a mandate for masks on July 28, due to the pressure from negative media and the criticisms from the Board of Supervisors. It is likely she will try again once the news cycle changes. She has also made clear that her mandate has not been removed forever, but is merely paused.
That’s why groups like the Alliance of Los Angeles County Parents and attorneys like Julie Hamill are so important, and why this lawsuit still matters.