DOJ will not conduct a civil rights investigation into Michigan nursing home deaths


In a photo provided by the Michigan Office of the Governor, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (Michigan Office of the Governor via AP)

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – The Department of Justice will not open a civil rights investigation into COVID-19 deaths in Michigan nursing homes.

That announcement on Thursday comes more than 10 months after the DOJ informed four Democratic governors, including Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, that it was exploring the possibility of such an investigation.

Republican state lawmakers have accused Gov. Whitmer of enacting policies that increased the spread of COVID-19 in nursing homes. Whitmer’s office denies this and says her administration followed federal guidelines.

Early in the pandemic, Gov. Whitmer ordered nursing homes not to prohibit admission or readmission of residents based on COVID-19 test results. However, her office told the DOJ that the policy was never enacted due to concerns from nursing homes, most of which are privately owned.

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