|BJC Urges Georgia Lawmakers to Reject RFRA Proposal in Current Form|
|Written by Don Byrd|
|Tuesday, 25 February 2014|
|From Kansas to Arizona, state religious freedom legislation has been a troubling news item the last couple of weeks. Now we may need to add Georgia to the list if HB 1023 moves forward as is. The bill is a state version of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), a federal law barring the government from substantially burdening a person’s religious exercise without a compelling interest as justification.
The federal RFRA was originally adopted with broad support across political lines because it shored up protections for a person’s religious exercise while maintaining key language to safeguard against allowing religion to be a trump card against federal laws and regulations. Unfortunately, several states including Georgia have been considering RFRA legislation or amendments that stray far afield from that carefully balanced federal law.
The Baptist Joint Committee led the diverse coalition that pushed Congress to adopt RFRA in 1993, but is urging Georgia lawmakers to reject HB 1023 as it is currently written. Here is a part of a letter the BJC sent to Georgia Representatives:
You can read the entire letter here.