Judge Denies Disney’s Motion to Dismiss Face Mask Lawsuit

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The Walt Disney Company can’t shake a discrimination lawsuit brought on by the mother of a child on the autism spectrum who was denied access to their local Disney Store over a face mask.

A judge has denied the Walt Disney Company’s motion to dismiss the discrimination case. Here are the details.

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Face mask
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Back in September of 2020, we reported on an incident that ended in a lawsuit involving a mother and her child on the autism spectrum. The autistic child was having trouble keeping their face mask on while shopping at a Disney Store in Pennsylvania.

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After being denied entry to the Disney Store, the child’s mother brought a discrimination lawsuit against the Walt Disney Company. The Walt Disney Company brought a motion to dismiss the suit, but a federal judge denied the motion, according to a report by The Morning Call.

Disney Store Orlando International
Credit: Disney

The family’s lawyer shared that they are pleased with the decision of the court to deny Disney’s motion to dismiss the case:

“We are very pleased with the court’s decision which confirms what we have known all along … civil rights do not disappear during a pandemic, We believe the court’s decision is definitely an early victory but an important one.”

During the height of the pandemic, the Disney Store changed its policy to allow entry only for those who wear an appropriate face-covering unless they are younger than two years old. Since then, the Disney Store has updated its face mask policy, but face mask rules still apply if the local government requires them to be worn in stores.

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Shae Emanuel, the boy’s mother who is pursuing this lawsuit, stated that:

“This has nothing to do with money, we’re not even asking for Disney for money and I’m not only standing up for my son, but other people with disabilities,” 

We will continue to follow this case as it continues. Stay tuned to Inside the Magic for the latest updates.

What do you think about this situation? Let us know in the comments.

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