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Louisiana Public Health Materials

Notes on Bathhouse Law in Louisiana

These are laws that might be used to close bathhouses in Louisiana

La. R.S. 40.4(A)(2) - Sanitary Code

Gives power to provide for immunization program, require reporting and investigation, and apply appropriate control measures to prevent the spread of communicable diseases of public health significance.

La. R.S. 40:5 - General Powers and Jurisdiction

The state health officer and the office of public health of the Dept. of Health and Hospitals shall have exclusive jurisdiction, control, and authority:

(2) To take such action as is necessary to accomplish the subsidence and suppression of diseases of all kinds in order to prevent their spread.

La. R.S. 14:106 - Obscenity

The crime of obscenity is the intentional:

(1) Exposure in any public place or place open to the public view with the intent of arousing sexual desire or which appeals to prurient interest or is patently offensive.

(2) ...management, operation,...promotion, exhibition,...of hard core sexual conduct

(3) involvement with obscene material

You may be interested in the following notes: 3, 7, 20, 21, 26, 33, 52

La. R.S. 14:106(1) - Promotion or wholesale promotion of obscene devices

La. R.S. 14.85.1 - Letting premises for obscenity

person must know that premises will be used for practice of obscenity as defined in 14:106 and results in a fine of not more than $500, or six months imprisonment, or both.

La. R.S. 14:104 - Keeping a disorderly place

intentionally maintaining a place to be used habitually for any illegal purpose.

La. R.S. 14:105 - Letting a disorderly place

La. R.S. 14:89 - Crime against nature

unnatural carnal copulation - anal sexual intercourse

(It is possible that this law is now unconstitutional.)

La. R.S. 13:4711 - Definitions; right to enjoin; abatement

defines "maintenance of a nuisance" (3), "prohibited activity" (5) which includes obscenity

La. R.S. 13:4712 - Right to petition for injunction or order of abatement

Robert P. George, Forum on Public Morality: The Concept of Public Morality, 45 Am. J. Juris. 17 (2000).

City of New Orleans v. Benson, 665 So.2d 1196, 95-1505 (La.App. 4 Cir. 11/30/95).

injunction due to a fire code violation upheld

Flex Enterprises, Inc. v. City of New Orleans, 780 So.2d 1145; 2001 La. App. LEXIS 311, 2000-0815 (La. App. 4 Cir., 02/14/01).

zoning used in an attempt to prevent the opening of homosexual bathhouse

establishment deemed to qualify as a "health club" under the New Orleans CZO

court found that public health official's decision was arbitrary and capricious.

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