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Coronavirus In Ohio: Dance Studios Sue Over Shutdown

ballet dancers
Tobias C. Wahl

Nine dance studios are suing the state of Ohio over mandated shutdowns and limitations imposed on their businesses.

Attorney Robert Gargasz says Gov. Mike DeWine used what he calls a “sledge hammer” on the economy by relying on flawed projections from former Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton to shut down the studios.

“Amy Acton and the Governor, acting as a state actor, decided to crush these people. And these people need to have some justice," Gargasz says.

The other attorney on the lawsuit, Gerald Phillips, says the shutdowns were unconstitutional. The lawsuit, which also suggests DeWine and Acton be removed from office, asks for a jury to award financial damages to the dance studios.

Acton resigned as Health Department director earlier this month, but has stayed on as DeWine's chief health adviser.

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.