Judge Márcio Santoro Rocha, from the 1st Federal Court of Duque de Caxias, Rio de Janeiro, suspended the decree of the President of the Republic, Jair Bolsonaro, which included churches and lottery houses as essential services and which allowed them to function normally during quarantine.
“Access to churches, religious and lottery temples stimulates the agglomeration and circulation of people”, wrote the federal judge in the decision that is valid for the whole country and that runs over the authority of the Executive Branch.
In the text, the magistrate also states that it is “clear that the decree jeopardizes the effectiveness of the isolation and flattening measures of the covid-19 case curve, which are notorious facts and widely reported by the press, which comes, register, performing their right to inform with mastery and exemption ”.
The judge also argued that “such measures are fundamental so that the Health System – public and private – does not collapse, with the unpredictable extent of the tragic consequences that this can lead to”.
He also states in the decision that “the right to religion, like any other, is not absolute and can be limited due to other rights”.
The decision was based on a public civil action brought by the prosecutor Julio José Araujo Junior, of the Federal Public Ministry of Rio de Janeiro.