|For Immediate Release
July 10, 2013
Manassas, VA – NRB is concerned by the advancement of The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (S.815), commonly known as ENDA, out of a Senate committee without adequate religious freedom protections.
“ENDA does not adequately heed the First Amendment freedoms of religious organizations,” stated NRB President & CEO Dr. Frank Wright. “I’m dismayed by the apparent willingness of some to brush past a right inscribed into the U.S. Constitution by our nation’s Founders.”
In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) after the vote in the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Dr. Wright declared, “A right engraved in the Constitution, in the very First Amendment, must not be treated lightly. Ambiguity regarding the rights of religious organizations is likely to stir litigation and to put a chill on one of our nation’s keystone liberties. I urge you not to advance ENDA given this concern.”
While testifying before the Senate HELP Committee last year, Craig Parshall, NRB Senior Vice President & General Counsel, outlined NRB’s concerns that ENDA “generally illustrates the kind of unaccommodating approach to religious organizations that was recently rejected by a unanimous decision of the Supreme Court” and the “insufficient ‘religious exemption’ provisions of this bill would permit a substantial and unconstitutional burden to be placed on religious organizations.” He also noted that sexual orientation and gender identity claims already have an avenue for legal remedy without ENDA.
When ENDA was re-introduced in May, Mr. Parshall asserted, “The current version of ENDA contains the same convoluted, so-called religious exemption language, as in prior years, and that language is an open invitation for endless litigation and paltry protection for religious employers.”
About NRB The National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) is a non-partisan, international association of Christian communicators whose member organizations represent millions of listeners, viewers, and readers. Our mission is to advance biblical truth; to promote media excellence; and to defend free speech. In addition to promoting standards of excellence, integrity, and accountability, NRB provides networking, educational, ministry, and fellowship opportunities for its members. Learn more at www.nrb.org.
About the NRB Convention The annual NRB International Christian Media Convention is the largest nationally and internationally recognized event dedicated solely to assist those in the field of Christian communications. The dynamic Exposition consists of around 200 companies and is an active marketplace for those seeking tools and services to expand their organizations. NRB 2014 will be held at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center in Nashville, TN, February 22-25, 2014. For more information, go to www.nrbconvention.org.
National Religious Broadcasters
9510 Technology Drive
Manassas, VA 20110