TIA will focus its legislative efforts on increasing congressional support for:
- The Local Law Enforcement Enhancement Act (LLEEA), which complements existing federal law by providing new authority for crimes where the victim is intentionally selected because of gender, sexual orientation, or disability. The LLEEA would also remove unnecessary jurisdictional barriers which currently allow federal law enforcement only when the victim is engaged in a federally protected activity, such as voting.
- The End Racial Profiling Act (ERPA), which would prohibit law enforcement from relying on the race, ethnicity, national origin or religion in selecting which individuals to subject to traffic stops or other routine investigatory activities.
- The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which would provide basic protections against workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
All three bills will be introduced with sponsors and assigned a bill number in the near future.
“Increasingly, religion is being misused as a tool for advancing hate,” said The Interfaith Alliance’s President, the Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy. “This package of legislation reaffirms a basic principle – that all Americans should enjoy the strongest possible guarantee of freedom from religious discrimination and faith-based bigotry.”
In addition, TIA also called on Congress to conduct an in-depth investigation of the president’s faith-based initiative. Former administration official David Kuo recently published a book, Tempting Faith, which makes serious allegations of government money flowing to fly-by-night religious charities rather than to more qualified organizations. Many of these conservative Christian organizations provide social services frequently accompanied by religious indoctrination.
“Those in Congress who value religious pluralism must send a strong, unified message that taxpayer money must not be used to advance religious faith,” said Rev. Gaddy.
Interfaith Alliance is a network of people of diverse faiths and beliefs from across the country working together to build a resilient democracy and fulfill America’s promise of religious freedom and civil rights not just for some, but for all. We mobilize powerful coalitions to challenge Christian nationalism and religious extremism, while fostering a better understanding of the healthy boundaries between religion and government. We advocate at all levels of government for an equitable and just America where the freedoms of belief and religious practice are protected, and where all persons are treated with dignity and have the opportunity to thrive. For more information visit interfaithalliance.org.