Congress may be away from Washington for the remainder of the summer, but that isn’t stopping us from pressing forward on the issues that impact the rights, freedom, and safety of people across faith and place. We were proud to be on Capitol Hill in June to celebrate the reintroduction of the Equality Act, which would codify non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ+ people in housing, medical care, and other essential services. Alongside members of Congress from both chambers, we emphasized that faith should never be used as an excuse to discriminate and that the vast majority of religious Americans support protections for LGBTQ+ people.
As we approach the 2024 election, we are also laser focused on ensuring that every person – no matter where they come from or who they vote for – can make their voice heard at the ballot box. That’s why Interfaith Alliance is building a multi-tiered initiative including public policy, education, and mobilization to ensure a safe, inclusive election. On Capitol Hill, we were proud to endorse the Freedom to Vote Act, a historic piece of legislation to strengthen our democracy, modernize voter registration efforts, and push back against anti-voting. We have also endorsed Senator Warnock’s Preventing Election Subversion Act and Representative Crockett’s Democracy Restoration Act, and we are engaging with faith communities to urge Congress to pass these critical bills.
With many of the battles to protect democracy shifting to the state level, we know that we can’t take our eye off of what’s happening in statehouses across the nation. This month, we brought together a coalition of more than 30 local and national faith and secular groups to address a concerning new law in Texas that would allow local school districts to install chaplains in place of professional school counselors. As people of faith and conscience, we believe this is an inappropriate, dangerous intrusion of religion into public education, in complete violation of church-state separation. In response, we worked with our allies to enlist more than 100 chaplains in Texas to sign a joint letter, taking a a stand in their local communities against this attack on the religious freedom rights of students, parents, and educators.