COVID Live Updates: Trial Will Decide Whether Mask Mandate Ban Violates Disabled Students' Rights
Get live updates throughout the day on how COVID-19 is affecting North Texas.
» COVID-19 By The Numbers:
- In Texas: More than 4 million cases and more than 64,400 deaths have been reported.
- Cases In North Texas: Tarrant County: 343,828; Dallas County: 329,013; Collin County: 100,902; Denton County: 100,007. There have been at least 10,582 reported deaths in the region's four largest counties. (Data as of Sept. 28)
- Counties across Texas: Use the Texas Newsroom's interactive maps.
- Global: See Johns Hopkins University's COVID-19 dashboard.
Tuesday, Sept. 28
Disability Rights Texas Files Lawsuit Over Ban On Mask Mandates
A federal trial set to begin on Oct. 6 will consider whether Gov. Greg Abbott's ban on mask mandates in schools violates the rights of students with disabilities.
Disability Rights Texas filed a lawsuit in August on behalf of 14 immunocompromised students, arguing the policy denies students with disabilities safe access to public education — a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Riki Graves is the mother of one of the students who is a plaintiff. Her first grader is a heart transplant recipient and has had 20 infectious disease hospital stays since she was born.
"For her to be exposed to another infectious disease is really scary and troubling, so we have decided to keep her home," Graves said to the Texas Standard on Monday.
Here's What You Need To Know About The Fight Over Mask Mandates In Texas
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is locked in several pitched legal battles with cities, counties and school districts over their bids to require masks in public schools.
In a May executive order, Abbott banned local governments from requiring people to wear masks.
But as the highly contagious delta variant of COVID-19 spread across Texas and the state’s vaccination rate stagnated, several public school and local government officials grew uneasy with Abbott’s order — particularly as schoolchildren too young to get vaccinated returned to classrooms.
Some local officials defied Abbott and issued mask mandates for schools anyway. Others sued the state over Abbott’s order. As dozens of ensuing legal battles continue playing out, Texas parents have found themselves caught in confusion about whether their children have to mask up at school.
The Texas Tribune has a summary of which districts have sued to enact mask mandates, who has won their legal battles, and what the rules are in different districts.
Baylor Scott & White Is Offering Drive-Through Flu Shots In Dallas And Irving
Baylor Scott & White is offering eight outdoor drive-through flu clinics in North Texas, with two of them scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 2 in Dallas and Irving.
The Dallas clinic will be at the community care facility on 4001 Worth Street, Dallas, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The Irvine clinic will be at the internal medicine associates facility on 2005 W Park Dr. Suite 300, Irving, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Scheduling an appointment is highly recommended.
More information about the clinics, including a schedule for later events and their locations, can be found at Baylor Scott & White's website.
Monday, Sept. 27
Boosters Roll Out Across North Texas & The State
More providers in Dallas-Fort Worth and across the state will be administering Pfizer's COVID-19 booster shot beginning today.
Many places offering the first and second dose of the Pfizer vaccine are also offering boosters to those who are eligible. The shots are currently reserved for people 65 or older, or at a higher risk of infection due to their health or profession.
This week, Denton County Public Health will begin sending scheduling links to people eligible for a booster shot.
A statement from County Judge Andy Eads said those who received shots through the county's public health department should check their texts and emails for information on eligibility.
Dallas County’s Parkland Hospital will begin administering booster shots starting today.
Appointments can be scheduled through Parkland. However, Ellis Davis Field House on Polk Street will offer doses without an appointment. The drive-through open Wednesday through Saturday from 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Houston Methodist Hospital CEO Marc Boom says the hospital system will first focus on those considered "at risk" when giving out shots. Dr. Boom adds he's already seeing growing demand for the shot.
"I expect that's just the tip of the iceberg, we're going to see that shoot up quite a bit more, as word gets out, news gets out, and people begin scheduling," Boom said.
CVS locations in Texas and across the country are also offering Pfizer boosters. The company says people interested in getting booster or their initial vaccine series are strongly encouraged to make an appointment at CVS.com or MinuteClinic.com to ensure they are able to access the correct vaccine at a convenient time and location.
Back in August, the FDA approved boosters of both the Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines for those who are immunocompromised or can't mount a strong immune response to the shot. Read more about who needs a booster and why from NPR.
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