Do No Harm v. Lee

Docket No.
District Court
Tennessee Middle


  • Declaration that licensure board design/terms are unconstitutional
  • Enjoin defendants from efforts to promote racial diversity


Litigation Content

Why This Matters: 

The plaintiff alleges that a state law requiring the Governor of Tennessee to appoint at least one member of a racial minority to the six-person Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Maintaining racial and ethnic diversity on professional licensing boards can lead to more equitable enforcement of licensure rules and otherwise eliminate barriers to entry for health professionals of color.

Potential Impact: 

Limiting policymakers’ ability to consider race in formulating policies related to health care workforce could continue to hamper efforts to diversify such workforce, ultimately negatively impacting patient care and public health, especially for racial and ethnic minorities.