U.S. Department of Labor: New Federal Rule ‘Helps To Ensure the Civil Rights of Religious Employers Are Protected’
by Jordan Hilger, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) - A new federal rule from the U.S. Department of labor will allow religious organizations contracting with the government to maintain consistency between their hiring practices and their statements of faith without losing funding.
The rule clarifies Executive Order 1246, which is aimed at preventing organizations that receive more than $10,000 from the government from discriminating against employees on the basis of race, religion, sex, or national origin, but was expanded under the Obama Administration to include sexual orientation and gender identity.
“All Americans have the freedom to operate according to their religious beliefs, and those freedoms don’t disappear when a university, charity, or international nongovernmental organization enters into a contract with the federal government,” Senior Counsel Gregory Baylor of Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) said in a statement praising the new rule.
Baylor’s organization, a religious liberty advocacy group, made headlines in March when it defended Christians against a decision from Yale Law School to defund students working for organizations who required employees to sign a lifestyle statement before hiring.
Federal non-discrimination law also overrode a Michigan state law in April that protected the consciences of Christian adoption agencies from having to place children with same-sex couples in order to receive funding from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.