Introduction:

This is the second bill of two in response to Florida Governor DeSantis Proclamation calling for a special legislative session, November 15, 2021. Section 381 is huge, and may require further amending over time. As it turns out, the Florida Legislature is starting to work with the Governor on this session. It is still imperative that this bill be considered as it will state absolutely the supremacy of both the Federal and State Constitutions, and constitutional rights, above any action taken by the Public Health Department or any subordinate division or officer, regardless of the extent or severity of any emergency or pandemic.

Relevent Sections: Section 381.001. Section 381.0012. Section 381.00315.

Proposed Amendments to Section 381.

Section 381.001 – Public Health System

After the first paragraph which reads:

The Department of Health is responsible for the state’s public health system which shall be designed to promote, protect, and improve the health of all people in the state. The department shall provide leadership for an active partnership working toward shared public health goals and involving federal, state, and local governments and the private sector. It is the intent of the Legislature that the department provide public health services through the 67 county health departments in partnership with county governments, as specified in part I of chapter 154, and in so doing make every attempt possible to solicit the support and involvement of private and not-for-profit health care agencies in fulfilling the public health mission.

The following paragraph shall be added:

However, no authority granted to the Public Health system, or anyone who works in it, shall infringe upon the Constitutional rights of any citizen or permanent resident of Florida, regardless of any declared state of emergency or the severity of that emergency. Public Health law and enforcement shall always be subordinate to the Federal and State of Florida Constitutions. Neither “reasonable restrictions,” nor a “compelling state interest,” nor any group “mandates” issued for any category of individuals, nor any other such infringing language, shall supersede individual rights.

Section 381.0012 – Enforcement Action

This section is repealed as it has nothing to do with public health, and everything to do with allowing the Public Health Department to violate the rights of the citizens and permanent residents of Florida. The Legislature shall study how they might create an enforcement policy that allows for legitimate enforcement of Public Health laws, while maintaining compliance with individual rights, and only after constitutional “due process” shall actions and enforcement take place against individuals. Enforcement, mandates, or policies shall not take place over groups.

A new section shall replace the old one above, and shall read:

Section 381.0012 – Supremacy of Individual and constitutional rights

The citizens of Florida have full body-autonomy and can not be forced, coerced, incentivized, or influenced in any way, into taking into their body or putting on their body, a medical drug, product, device, or other medically derived entity, without full knowledge, understanding, and consent. No jeopardy shall be placed on their person, their employment, their assets, their family, their travel, their drivers license, any professional licenses, or any other factor that could possibly cause them to make any decision not of their own free will. Any such actions will violate consent and both void and prohibit any action taken under Section 381.

Section 381.00315 – Public health advisories; public health emergencies; isolation and quarantines

A link to this Section in law is provided due to its complexity:

https://casetext.com/statute/florida-statutes/title-xxix-public-health/chapter-381-public-health-general-provisions/section-38100315-public-health-advisories-public-health-emergencies-isolation-and-quarantines

The State Health Officer is responsible for declaring public health emergencies, issuing public health advisories, and ordering isolation or quarantines.

(1) As used in this section, the term:

(d) “Quarantine” means the separation of an individual reasonably believed to have been exposed to a communicable disease, but who is not yet ill, from individuals who have not been so exposed, to prevent the possible spread of the disease.

This definition shall be amended to read:

(d) “Quarantine” means the separation of an individual with demonstrated symptoms of a dangerous communicable disease. Only through constitutional “due process,” by determining through accurate and appropriate peer reviewed and accepted testing, and where symptoms are physically present, that an individual has contracted a dangerous or life-threatening communicable disease, shall any measures such as quarantine be taken against them, and then only to the extent necessary to be non-contagious. Neither asymptomatic nor healthy people, nor individuals or groups, regardless of real or potential exposure to individuals who may be contagious or just believed to be, or due to airborne exposure, shall be quarantined. No closures of public areas or offices, nor private property, nor any business or commercial operations, nor any religious or other organized or group activity, shall be allowed under this part.

(2)

(a) The department shall prepare and maintain a state public health emergency management plan to serve as a comprehensive guide to public health emergency response in this state. The department shall develop the plan in collaboration with the Division of Emergency Management, other executive agencies with functions relevant to public health emergencies, district medical examiners, and national and state public health experts and ensure that it integrates and coordinates with the public health emergency management plans and programs of the Federal Government.

This first part shall be amended to read:

(a) The department shall prepare and maintain a state public health emergency management plan to serve as a comprehensive guide to public health emergency response in this state. The department shall develop the plan in collaboration with the Florida Division of Emergency Management, other Florida executive agencies with functions relevant to public health emergencies, district medical examiners, and state public health experts. The department shall also collaborate just as much with non-government sources, including but not limited to: doctors, public health experts, risk management companies, private emergency services, private universities, private consultants and think tanks, and other private sources for a balanced approach to any emergency. Florida shall remain independent and not subject to any of the policies, guidelines and mandates of the federal government, unless and until Florida, by legislation and executive signature, chooses to adopt such policies and guidelines. Mandates are generally in violation of constitutional rights and should not be considered.

(2)(b) Currently says:

(b) Before declaring a public health emergency, the State Health Officer shall, to the extent possible, consult with the Governor and shall notify the Chief of Domestic Security. The declaration of a public health emergency shall continue until the State Health Officer finds that the threat or danger has been dealt with to the extent that the emergency conditions no longer exist and he or she terminates the declaration. However, a declaration of a public health emergency may not continue for longer than 60 days unless the Governor concurs in the renewal of the declaration.

(b) Shall be amended by including after the above, the following:

Counties shall have the right to terminate any declaration of public health emergency by determining that no such emergency exists in their county. Cities shall have the same legal right and ability. The same applies to rejecting any federal declarations, guidelines or policies.

(2)(c) Is repealed. It is nothing but state control of health information, much as the CDC monopolizes, controls and distorts information to the public all for the purpose of maintaining political rather than health policies. Private accounting and reporting of health statistics, especially in a declared emergency, are likely to be far more accurate than government reporting designed to bring about a political or other outcome.

(2)(d) The State Health Officer, upon declaration of a public health emergency, may take actions that are necessary to protect the public health. Such actions include, but are not limited to:

Shall be amended to read:

(d) The State Health Officer, upon declaration of a public health emergency, may take legal actions that are necessary to protect the public health, but that do not deny or infringe upon individual and constitutional rights. Such actions include, but are not limited to:

(2)(d)4. reads as follows:

4. Ordering an individual to be examined, tested, vaccinated, treated, isolated, or quarantined for communicable diseases that have significant morbidity or mortality and present a severe danger to public health. Individuals who are unable or unwilling to be examined, tested, vaccinated, or treated for reasons of health, religion, or conscience may be subjected to isolation or quarantine. 

a. Examination, testing, vaccination, or treatment may be performed by any qualified person authorized by the State Health Officer.

b. If the individual poses a danger to the public health, the State Health Officer may subject the individual to isolation or quarantine. If there is no practical method to isolate or quarantine the individual, the State Health Officer may use any means necessary to vaccinate or treat the individual.

c. Any order of the State Health Officer given to effectuate this paragraph is immediately enforceable by a law enforcement officer under s. 381.0012.

(2)(d)4. Shall be amended to read:

4. Ordering an individual to be examined, tested, isolated, or quarantined for communicable diseases that have significant morbidity or mortality. Individuals who are unable or unwilling to be examined or tested, for reasons of health, religion, or conscience, which can not be honored or delayed, may be subjected to isolation or quarantine if they show positive symptoms of a lethal communicable disease before a licensed physician who will certify as such. If subsequent testing proves negative or if symptoms disappear, they shall not be inconvenienced further. 

a. Examination, testing, or treatment, after receiving informed consent, without coercion or influence on the individual, may be performed by any qualified person, authorized by the State Health Officer.

b. Is duplicative and is repealed.

c. Any order of the State Health Officer given to effectuate this paragraph given to a law enforcement officer under s. 381.0012 (as amended by this bill) shall be subject to all Federal and State constitutional and individual rights, including especially due process.