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Protect Religious Rights in the Workplace

May 15, 2003

The Workplace Religious Freedom Act (May 10) is the most important religious liberty bill since the Civil Rights Act was amended in 1972 to require employers to accommodate workers' religious practices. The courts have so undermined the law that too many companies routinely force workers to choose between faithfulness to God and keeping a job.

The ACLU's claim that the bill would permit workers to force their religion on others or otherwise harm co-workers is disingenuous. The bill does not change existing law that protects workers against religious harassment. The real problem is that people of faith are being excluded from entire industries on account of their religious observances or their appearance.

Federal civil rights laws require fair treatment on the basis of race, age, gender, disability and national origin. Religion is the last frontier. The courts have created a legal framework that encourages religious discrimination. Americans deserve better.

Alan J. Reinach

President, Seventh-day

Adventist Church-State

Council, Westlake Village

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