Dennis Hart gives a summary of Iowa news.
Last May, Governor Reynolds signed into law legislation forbidding school districts and local governments from issuing mask mandates but this past Monday, a U.S. District Court issued a temporary restraining order against the law. This was in response to a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa and the Arc of Iowa.The situation is still in flux – governor Reynolds has reacted forcefully against this, but in light of this restraining order, some school districts in the area have already taken action. Last week Des Moines School, Iowa’s largest school district, along with Urbandale, and West Des Moines reinstated mask mandates, as did Ames. Gilbert has voted against a mask mandate, Nevada and Boone districts have yet to decide, and Ballard School DIstrict was not able to get back to KHOI with a response.
KHOI government reporters Laura Belin and Dennis Hart give a summary of the events and issue. John Mikelson, board member of Able Up Iowa and longtime advocate for the disabled, explains the RehabilitationAct of 1973 and the American DisabilityAct, two laws which formed the basis for the lawsuit of the ACLU of Iowa and the Arc of Iowa.
Connie Ryan, Executive Director of the Interfaith Alliance of Iowa reads their statement in support of the Federal Court's recent restraining order and makes the case for local control over mask mandates. Kathleen Mathews is a parent with three children in school in Des Moines, Iowa's largest school district. She talks about her anxiety for her children and her concern that her children are not learning about public safety when teachers don't wear masks. Two of her children have already been exposed to the virus in class, when the mask mandate was outlawed.
Starting this Thursday, Iowa State will participate for the third time, in the International ClimateChange Theatre Action initiative, a biennial, worldwide series of short plays and performances that coincides with the United Nations Climate Change Conference. The ISU Theatre's “Climate Change Theatre Action 2021” is a touring production that will open Thursday, Sept. 23, at 5:15 p.m., outside ISU Parks Library. A schedule of performances around the community can be found here.
This year's performance is focused on the Ames Climate Action Plan and is designed to help Ames residents get involved with the plan. Details of this series of local performances with a global perspective are described by Vivian Cook, community engagement director for ISU Theatre's and The EcoTheatre Lab's Climate Change Theatre Action, Piper Smith, assistant director and performing arts student, and Valentine Chenus, a sophomore in Environmental Science and Performing Arts and stage manager for the Climate Change Theatre Action.