It’s been a month since the first traveler petitioned the Superior Court of Guam, challenging the government’s mandatory quarantine protocols of inbound travelers and calling it a violation of constitutional rights.
Over the course of hearing dozens of quarantine cases, Superior Court Judge Elyze Iriarte came to the conclusion that travelers were not being adequately advised of their constitutional rights relative to quarantine upon entry to Guam.
As a remedy, Iriarte appointed the Alternate Public Defender (APD) to represent all incoming passengers. Prior to this, petitioners were represented by private attorneys and had to pay for the services.
The move to a court-appointed attorney appears to be paying off as hearings which once took hours to address travelers’ issues have now become more efficient. The hearing today, for instance, was reduced to minutes.
APD John Morrison provided the good news to the court that outside of previously addressed issues, no requests to file a case have been brought forth by travelers arriving on September 30th and October 1st.
He also shared that more and more travelers are aware that they have legal representation and can contact the APD for assistance and guidance.
“We’re getting a lot of positive answers, they knew that we are here and they can call for one reason or another,” said Morrison.
A hearing is set for tomorrow at 1:30 pm to address travelers arriving on Sept 30th through October 2nd.