A year ago, when Donald Trump and Mike Pence were elected to the highest offices in the land, Americans United warned of the many threats this administration posed to church-state separation. We promised that if any of those threats came to fruition, we would be ready to fight back and defend religious freedom.
Americans United is following through on a promise we made when the Trump administration announced an attack on women’s health care last month: We’ve filed a federal lawsuit challenging the administration’s new regulations that allow employers and universities to use religion as an excuse to deny their staff and students health insurance coverage for birth control.
Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the National Women’s Law Center today filed a lawsuit against Trump administration rules that allow employers and universities to cite religious or moral objections in order to deny employees and students health insurance coverage of birth control.
Americans United for Separation of Church and State, joined by six civil-rights and religious organizations, today filed a friend-of-the-court brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to affirm that a Colorado bakery does not have a religious-freedom right to refuse to serve same-sex couples in violation of the state’s antidiscrimination laws.
The Supreme Court will soon hear the case of a Colorado baker, Jack Phillips, who insists that he has a right, under the First Amendment, to refuse service to same-sex couples.
Phillips asserts that his religious beliefs preclude him from baking wedding cakes for same-sex couples. His attorneys at Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) also argue that Phillips is a “cake artist” and can’t be compelled to create something that offends his faith.
When high-school sweethearts Amanda Abramovich and Samantha Brookover applied for a marriage license on Feb. 3, 2016, in Glenville, W.Va., they expected it to be one of the happiest days of their lives. Instead, they were on the receiving end of verbal abuse from a Gilmer County clerk who told the couple that God would “deal” with them and that they were an “abomination.”
In 2012, Charlie Craig and David Mullins faced a double serving of discrimination when they were ready to get married: They couldn’t marry in their home state because Colorado did not yet allow marriage equality, and a bakery in Denver’s suburbs refused to make them a wedding cake.
We at Americans United were sad to say goodbye to Legal Fellows Bradley Girard and Carmen Green at the beginning of August when their two-year fellowship with AU came to an end. Both brought a wealth of legal knowledge and enthusiasm for church-state separation to our Legal Department.