Colorado has dropped its coronavirus capacity limits on houses of worship and religious events — including weddings and funerals — after a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling cast doubt on the legality of such restrictions.
State public health officials are still recommending that houses of worship limit the number of people who attend their services. But a late-night amended order released Monday by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment appears to concede the state likely cannot enforce capacity caps following the Supreme Court’s decision.
“Worship and ceremonies such as weddings and funerals are classified as essential,” CDPHE said in a news release. “This means that they must do their best to follow public health recommendations but may exceed recommended capacity caps if they cannot conduct their essential activity within those restrictions. They still must require masks indoors and other prevention measures like six-foot spacing between members of different households and appropriate sanitation. Outdoor activities are still strongly preferred.”
The U.S. Supreme Court last month temporarily ruled 5-4 that New York’s limits on attendance at places of worship, which were aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19, could not be enforced.
This story is being published partially online and in full in select print editions through an agreement with the Colorado Sun. Read the full story online at coloradosun.com.