May 27, 2020 – United States District Court Judge Thomas M. Durkin today granted Aunt Martha’s Health and Wellness, Inc.’s request for an Emergency Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against the Village of Midlothian.
The TRO prohibits the Village of Midlothian from shutting down Aunt Martha’s Children’s Quarantine Center (CQC) for DCFS youth in care affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The nonprofit organization filed the request on May 18, less than a week after filing suit against the Village.
“Aunt Martha’s focus has always been, and will always be the health and safety of the children and youth in our care,” said Raul Garza, Aunt Martha’s President and CEO.
“We are pleased with today’s ruling granting our motion for a temporary restraining order, which will allow the continued operation of the Children’s Quarantine Center – a first of its kind program that serves as a last resort for DCFS youth who have been exposed to or diagnosed with COVID-19 and have nowhere else to safely quarantine,” said Ricardo Meza who serves as lead counsel for Aunt Martha’s in its lawsuit against the Village of Midlothian.
Following the COVID-19 outbreak in mid-March, DCFS asked child welfare organizations to determine their capacity to safely care for youth who have tested positive or are known to have been exposed to the COVID-19 virus. The CQC represents Aunt Martha’s response to the state’s call.
“Today is an important day for everyone who cares about the health and well-being of the youth in our child welfare system, and it is just the latest chapter in Aunt Martha’s long history of standing up for and serving the most vulnerable members of our community,” said Garza.
Also representing the organization in its lawsuit are attorneys Roger Derstine of Roger B. Derstine, Chartered and Sohil Shah of Polsinelli, PC.