FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 30, 2020

CONTACT
Sarah Clements, West End Strategy Team
[email protected]; Phone: 202.765.8584

In School Voucher Case, SCOTUS Undermines State and Federal Prohibitions on Public Funding for Religious Activities

WASHINGTON — Today, the Supreme Court issued a decision in  Espinoza v. Montana, greenlighting the use of taxpayer dollars to fund religious instruction. Katy Joseph, director of policy & advocacy at Interfaith Alliance, condemned the decision, stating:

American public schools play an unparalleled role in building cooperation and understanding among diverse communities. Open to all, these institutions exist to deliver on the promise of a quality education for every child. For a myriad of reasons, our public schools are chronically underfunded leaving students without equal opportunities for achievement.

Today’s decision will only make this problem worse by redirecting public funds away from public schools and into private, often religious, institutions through tax credit programs like Montana’s Student Scholarship Organizations. The First Amendment prohibits discrimination by government entities against religion writ large, but also prohibits the use of taxpayer dollars to fund religious activities. While every American enjoys the freedom to practice our faith, or no faith at all, we do not have the right to demand public support for private religious observance.

By siding with private religious institutions, the Supreme Court’s decision will further starve our public school systems while inflicting lasting damage to the wall of separation between religion and government.

If you would like to speak with Katy Joseph further, please contact Sarah Clements at [email protected]

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Interfaith Alliance celebrates religious freedom by championing individual rights, promoting policies that protect both religion and democracy, and uniting diverse voices to challenge extremism. Founded in 1994, Interfaith Alliance brings together members from 75 faith traditions as well as those without a faith tradition to protect faith and freedom. For more information visit www.interfaithalliance.org.