Americans United for Separation of Church and State President and CEO Rachel Laser issued the following statement in response to the U.S. Supreme Court today declining to review Faith Bible Chapel International v. Tucker and Synod of Bishops v. Belya:
“Religious freedom is not a license to harm others or prevent people from seeking justice in courts of law. These cases are far from over, but Gregg Tucker and Father Alexander Belya now have a chance to vindicate their rights.
“We are facing an aggressive movement working to recast religious freedom into a weapon that would allow religious institutions to discriminate without limit or consequence. AU believes religious freedom should be a shield, not a sword. Today, the Court let that principle stand.”
Americans United represents Gregg Tucker, an exemplary teacher and dean of student life who was fired by a Colorado Christian school for trying to address pervasive racism, and Father Alexander Belya, an Orthodox Christian priest who was publicly defamed by his colleagues. Tucker and Belya are represented by AU Litigation Counsel Bradley Girard and Legal Fellow Gabriela Hybel, along with co-counsel Bradley A. Levin, Jeremy A. Sitcoff, and Peter G. Friesen (for Tucker) and Oleg Rivkin (for Belya).
Americans United is a religious freedom advocacy organization based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1947, AU educates Americans about the importance of church-state separation in safeguarding religious freedom.
Associate Vice President of Communications