GA Clergy Applaud Governor’s Veto of Discriminatory “Religious Freedom” Bill

For Immediate Release

March 28, 2016

 

Contact:

Michelle Nealy, 202-735-7123, mnealy@faithinpubliclife.org

Graham Younger, 678-739-8584, gyounger@faithinpubliclife.org

 

GA Clergy Applaud Governor’s Veto of Discriminatory “Religious Freedom” Bill

 

Atlanta, GA – On Monday, March 28th, Governor Nathan Deal vetoed HB 757, a dangerous bill that would have allowed faith-based organizations to discriminate in hiring on the basis of religion. During a press conference, Gov. Deal said, "I do not think that we have to discriminate against anyone to protect the faith based community in Georgia of which I and my family have been a part of for all of our lives."

 

More than 300 clergy from across the state advocated fiercely to defeat the overly broad, discriminatory bill. Today, the faith community is heartened by the governor’s actions and will continue to work tirelessly to ensure that Georgia is a state of inclusion by pushing for comprehensive civil rights protections. 

 

Rabbi Joshua Heller, Congregation B’nai Torah:

“As a Rabbi, I'm relieved and grateful that religion will not be used to excuse or legalize discrimination in our state, thanks to Governor Deal's decision to veto HB 757.  I am one of many Georgians who feel that our faith demands that we treat others fairly and kindly, as we would wish to be treated ourselves.” 

 

Rev. James E. Lamkin, Northside Drive Baptist Church: 

“I am grateful to Governor Deal for his courageous leadership in vetoing HB 757.  Religious Freedom doesn't mean freedom to discriminate in the name of religion.  As Georgians, we affirm that robust religious freedom is already woven into the fabric of our community; and it is done so by the threads of responsibility, fairness, and equality." 

 

Rev. William Flippin Jr., Emmanuel Lutheran Church:

“I applaud Governor Deal for his decision to veto a bill that sanctioned discrimination in the name of religion. My faith teaches that we are to treat others fairly, as we would wish to be treated ourselves. By vetoing this bill, the governor has sent a clear message that inclusion is a value that Georgia must embrace. The next step to protect all Georgians from discrimination is to pass comprehensive civil rights protections into law.”

 

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