Gyms Poised for Legal Battle Pending Shut Down Order

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Should Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine move to shut down gyms and fitness centers in his state, some owners of such facilities are poised to fight him in court. 

Fox 8 reports that DeWine may consider such a move this week, as the state and the country continue to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic. Case numbers have continued to climb throughout the country, straining local hospital systems and leading elected officials to once again consider restrictions. 

Earlier in the crisis, a group of Ohio gym owners got a positive result from a judge who ruled in their favor when the owners sued over the state health department’s “Stay Safe” order. The suit, filed on behalf of nearly three dozen gym owners, argued that the state health director had exceeded her authority by forcing gyms to close when other businesses were allowed to remain open. The judge called such orders unconstitutional, and prevented the state from issuing penalties for non-compliance.

Alex Dudas, owner of AIM Performance Training, was one of the participating gym owners, and says he is willing to go to court again should restrictions be handed down. 

“Am I willing to listen to the new guideline, what they say and if we can make any changes? Absolutely. Will we shut down? That’s something we’ll have to see,” Dudas told Fox 8. 

He said the group’s attorney is prepared to take action, as well. 

“He will do whatever’s possible, so that we can stay open and operate, regardless of what happens,” Dudas said. 

Dudas hinted at the futility of a move to shutdown gyms when people aren’t willing to make sacrifices in other parts of their lives.

“People are not gonna follow orders, they’re gonna hang out with their family, they’re gonna have Thanksgiving, the majority of people are still gonna do all those things, so why close down one thing that’s keeping you healthy?”

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