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NYC strip clubs sue New York state over COVID shutdown
19th March 2021
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NEW YORK — A group of New York City exotic dancing clubs sued New York state Thursday, saying it’s not fair that they’re being kept closed when everything from axe-throwing venues to bars with live music and casinos can open up.
The lawsuit filed in Manhattan federal court claimed that thousands of employees are forced out of work by the state’s ban because of the coronavirus. Defendants included Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state's liquor licensing authority.
Exotic dancing clubs including “Starlet’s,” “Sugar Daddy’s” and “Gallagher’s 2000” in the borough of Queens asked the court to declare it a violation of the First and 14th Amendments to keep their clubs closed while letting other enclosed establishments open up.
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The lawsuit comes as the state’s widening of rules for bars and restaurants have led many to open this week.
It also was filed after similar clashes between establishments that allow nudity or dancing in other states. In December, a judge in California let two San Diego strip clubs make their own determinations about providing a safe environment for dancers and patrons during the pandemic.