Outreach & Events - Freedom From Religion Foundation
Lauryn Seering

Lauryn Seering

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Repeal RFRA

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IT'S TIME TO REPEAL FEDERAL AND STATE RFRAS
The so-called religious freedom restoration act
 

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Help ensure no hate in any state 
 
Religious protection laws, once considered shields, are now being used as weapons against the LGBTQ community, religious minorities, atheists, and even against women’s right to birth control. A law euphemistically called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), passed by Congress in 1993, is spawning state versions, including the Indiana law passed in April 2015 creating a nationwide furor. Yet Indiana is not alone in passing legislation that makes minorities, gays, nonbelievers and women vulnerable to religious bigotry. At least 20 other states have passed state RFRAs, with more states considering such laws. In the United States, the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights to the U.S. Constitution protects religious liberty. RFRA is not only unnecessary, but is being used to undermine true religious liberty. The best protection for religious freedom is a government free from religion.
 
Below find out why RFRA should be repealed at the state and federal levels, and how you can take simple actions to effect change. 

Read FFRF's FAQ about RFRA here. 
 
contact president, congress members
 
Please immediately call, email and write:

CONTACT

Please immediately call, email and write:

Your U.S. Senators 

Your district Representative

Demand that your representatives in Congress uphold women's rights over religious wrongs, and restore some semblance of fairness to our corporate system, by repealing RFRA now.

TALKING POINTS

Use your own words if possible, or cut and paste any of the wording below. Always identify yourself as a constituent. (Also see FFRF's statement on the Hobby Lobby ruling for more arguments.)

I am writing as your constituent to urge you to take action in the wake of the Supreme Court's unprecedented decision in Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. Please take action to repeal the misguided Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which has been used to decide that a corporation trumps the civil and reproductive rights of women workers to choose their own form of contraception.

I'm dismayed and frightened by the implications of this decision, which puts the personal religious views of corporate executives above the rights of tens of thousands of employees. Corporations are not people and a corporation cannot practice religion. Yet the Supreme Court has ruled that the access to contraceptive coverage granted by the Affordable Care Act creates a significant burden on a corporation's free exercise of religion. The decision is completely divorced from reality!

The main justification for this outlandish decision is the Supreme Court's holding that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) protects Hobby Lobby from the generally applicable rules of the Affordable Care Act. Regardless of Congress's original intent, RFRA has become an untenable law. It carves out vast exceptions to neutral laws that only certain religious sects can claim. In the corporate context, this provides an unfair competitive advantage to any corporation willing to claim that it has a religious objection to a regulation.

Employers should not have a right to deny fundamental rights to employees in the name of "religious liberty." Please introduce or sign onto a bill to repeal RFRA immediately.

 
 
 
 

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- See more at: http://ffrf.org/news/action/item/20865-ask-congress-to-counter-supreme-court-s-hobby-lobby-ruling#sthash.b22CJfKs.74qPIuyW.dpuf
Please immediately call, email and write:

CONTACT

Please immediately call, email and write:

Your U.S. Senators 

Your district Representative

Demand that your representatives in Congress uphold women's rights over religious wrongs, and restore some semblance of fairness to our corporate system, by repealing RFRA now.

TALKING POINTS

Use your own words if possible, or cut and paste any of the wording below. Always identify yourself as a constituent. (Also see FFRF's statement on the Hobby Lobby ruling for more arguments.)

I am writing as your constituent to urge you to take action in the wake of the Supreme Court's unprecedented decision in Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. Please take action to repeal the misguided Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which has been used to decide that a corporation trumps the civil and reproductive rights of women workers to choose their own form of contraception.

I'm dismayed and frightened by the implications of this decision, which puts the personal religious views of corporate executives above the rights of tens of thousands of employees. Corporations are not people and a corporation cannot practice religion. Yet the Supreme Court has ruled that the access to contraceptive coverage granted by the Affordable Care Act creates a significant burden on a corporation's free exercise of religion. The decision is completely divorced from reality!

The main justification for this outlandish decision is the Supreme Court's holding that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) protects Hobby Lobby from the generally applicable rules of the Affordable Care Act. Regardless of Congress's original intent, RFRA has become an untenable law. It carves out vast exceptions to neutral laws that only certain religious sects can claim. In the corporate context, this provides an unfair competitive advantage to any corporation willing to claim that it has a religious objection to a regulation.

Employers should not have a right to deny fundamental rights to employees in the name of "religious liberty." Please introduce or sign onto a bill to repeal RFRA immediately.

- See more at: http://ffrf.org/news/action/item/20865-ask-congress-to-counter-supreme-court-s-hobby-lobby-ruling#sthash.b22CJfKs.74qPIuyW.dpuf
Please immediately call, email and tweet:
 
Comments: 202-456-1111
 
 
 
tweet public officials, celebrities and corporations who don't like indiana law 
 
Ask them to fight Federal RFRA, too! Use the hashtag #RepealRFRA and tweet:

The White House @WhiteHouse
Hillary Clinton @HillaryClinton
Audra McDonald @AudraEqualityMc
George Takei @GeorgeTakei
NFL @NFL
Angie’s List @AngiesList
Gen Con @Gen_Con
Apple CEO Tim Cook @tim_cook
Walmart @Walmart
Salesforce @Salesforce
NCAA @NCAA
NASCAR @NASCAR

here is what is happening in your state 
 
Professor Marci Hamilton, foremost legal expert in the harm of RFRA, keeps citizens posted on what’s happening in your state, and posts timely commentary on RFRA problems. If you live in a state that’s adopted RFRA, contact your governor and legislators today. Read more here!
 
Find out why it’s time to repeal RFRA
 
ffrf asks governor to repeal state rfras, including conn. and va. 
 
It’s great that the governors of Connecticut and Virginia have condemned Indiana’s discrimination law. But did you know their states also have adopted RFRA laws codifying the right of religious people to be exempted from civil rights laws? Read more
 
stop the hate #boycottindiana, overturn rfra laws everywhere
 
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When my mother-in-law Pat Barker's eyes were opened to religion after a lifetime of devout fundamentalist belief, she poignantly told my husband, Dan: "I'm so glad I don't have to hate anymore."

"You don't have to hate anymore" could be the slogan of the movement known by the hashtag #boycottindiana.

- See more at: http://ffrf.org/news/news-releases/item/22672-stop-the-hate-boycottindiana-overturn-rfra-laws-everywhere#sthash.TlL2gRz7.dpuf

When my mother-in-law Pat Barker's eyes were opened to religion after a lifetime of devout fundamentalist belief, she poignantly told my husband, Dan: "I'm so glad I don't have to hate anymore."

"You don't have to hate anymore" could be the slogan of the movement known by the hashtag #boycottindiana.

- See more at: http://ffrf.org/news/news-releases/item/22672-stop-the-hate-boycottindiana-overturn-rfra-laws-everywhere#sthash.TlL2gRz7.dpuf

When my mother-in-law Pat Barker's eyes were opened to religion after a lifetime of devout fundamentalist belief, she poignantly told my husband, Dan: "I'm so glad I don't have to hate anymore."

"You don't have to hate anymore" could be the slogan of the movement known by the hashtag #boycottindiana.

- See more at: http://ffrf.org/news/news-releases/item/22672-stop-the-hate-boycottindiana-overturn-rfra-laws-everywhere#sthash.TlL2gRz7.dpufWri
Writes FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor: “When my mother-in-law Pat Barker’s eyes were opened to religion after a lifetime of devout fundamentalist belief, she poignantly told my husband, Dan: ‘I’m so glad I don’t have to hate anymore.’ ‘You don’t have to hate anymore’ could be the slogan of the movement known by the hashtag #boycottindiana. Read more!
 
welcome to the fight: religion should not trump the law
 
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FFRF Staff Attorney Andrew Seidel tells you why Indiana’s law was no surprise to FFRF. Read more. Also read Andrew’s column, ‘Five Reasons Why Hobby Lobby Ruling Should Terrify you.’
 
dispelling myths by apologists for rfra
 
FFRF Attorney Andrew Seidel dispels myths by apologists for RFRA and paints the big picture. Read more here!
 
ffrf, marci hamilton brief calls on supreme court to overturn federal rfra
 
FFRF, working with noted state/church attorney Marci A. Hamilton, asked the Supreme Court in the Hobby Lobby case, to declare the federal RFRA unconstitutional. Read why here
 
what's wrong with hobby lobby ruling? 
 
The U.S. Supreme Court in 2014 ruled that under the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, it is lawful for corporations to deny women employees contraceptive insurance coverage otherwise mandated by the Affordable Care Act if they claim the corporation’s “religion” is offended by birth control. The decision was not decided on the basis of the Constitution, but the Congressionally-enacted RFRA. Congress need only repeal RFRA to ensure worker and women’s rights. Read more here!
 
VIEW FFRF'S FULL-PAGE AD IN NEW YORK TIMES AGAINST HOBBY LOBBY RULING
Please immediately call, email and write:

CONTACT

Please immediately call, email and write:

Your U.S. Senators 

Your district Representative

Demand that your representatives in Congress uphold women's rights over religious wrongs, and restore some semblance of fairness to our corporate system, by repealing RFRA now.

TALKING POINTS

Use your own words if possible, or cut and paste any of the wording below. Always identify yourself as a constituent. (Also see FFRF's statement on the Hobby Lobby ruling for more arguments.)

I am writing as your constituent to urge you to take action in the wake of the Supreme Court's unprecedented decision in Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. Please take action to repeal the misguided Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which has been used to decide that a corporation trumps the civil and reproductive rights of women workers to choose their own form of contraception.

I'm dismayed and frightened by the implications of this decision, which puts the personal religious views of corporate executives above the rights of tens of thousands of employees. Corporations are not people and a corporation cannot practice religion. Yet the Supreme Court has ruled that the access to contraceptive coverage granted by the Affordable Care Act creates a significant burden on a corporation's free exercise of religion. The decision is completely divorced from reality!

The main justification for this outlandish decision is the Supreme Court's holding that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) protects Hobby Lobby from the generally applicable rules of the Affordable Care Act. Regardless of Congress's original intent, RFRA has become an untenable law. It carves out vast exceptions to neutral laws that only certain religious sects can claim. In the corporate context, this provides an unfair competitive advantage to any corporation willing to claim that it has a religious objection to a regulation.

Employers should not have a right to deny fundamental rights to employees in the name of "religious liberty." Please introduce or sign onto a bill to repeal RFRA immediately.

 
 
 
 

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- See more at: http://ffrf.org/news/action/item/20865-ask-congress-to-counter-supreme-court-s-hobby-lobby-ruling#sthash.b22CJfKs.74qPIuyW.dpuf
Please immediately call, email and write:

CONTACT

Please immediately call, email and write:

Your U.S. Senators 

Your district Representative

Demand that your representatives in Congress uphold women's rights over religious wrongs, and restore some semblance of fairness to our corporate system, by repealing RFRA now.

TALKING POINTS

Use your own words if possible, or cut and paste any of the wording below. Always identify yourself as a constituent. (Also see FFRF's statement on the Hobby Lobby ruling for more arguments.)

I am writing as your constituent to urge you to take action in the wake of the Supreme Court's unprecedented decision in Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. Please take action to repeal the misguided Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which has been used to decide that a corporation trumps the civil and reproductive rights of women workers to choose their own form of contraception.

I'm dismayed and frightened by the implications of this decision, which puts the personal religious views of corporate executives above the rights of tens of thousands of employees. Corporations are not people and a corporation cannot practice religion. Yet the Supreme Court has ruled that the access to contraceptive coverage granted by the Affordable Care Act creates a significant burden on a corporation's free exercise of religion. The decision is completely divorced from reality!

The main justification for this outlandish decision is the Supreme Court's holding that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) protects Hobby Lobby from the generally applicable rules of the Affordable Care Act. Regardless of Congress's original intent, RFRA has become an untenable law. It carves out vast exceptions to neutral laws that only certain religious sects can claim. In the corporate context, this provides an unfair competitive advantage to any corporation willing to claim that it has a religious objection to a regulation.

Employers should not have a right to deny fundamental rights to employees in the name of "religious liberty." Please introduce or sign onto a bill to repeal RFRA immediately.

- See more at: http://ffrf.org/news/action/item/20865-ask-congress-to-counter-supreme-court-s-hobby-lobby-ruling#sthash.b22CJfKs.74qPIuyW.dpuf
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Wisconsin Vouchers

What is the current Wisconsin voucher system like?

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A Freedom From Religion Foundation “In Reason We Trust” sign was stolen March 28 from the first floor Capitol rotunda in Madison, Wis. The sign features Thomas Jefferson with his thought-provoking quote, “Question with boldness even the existence of a god. . .”

FFRF Staff Attorney Sam Grover and Legal Intern Ryan Jayne filed the permit application on March 9. The sign was put up in the Capitol to counter Eastertime religious displays.

After contacting authorities, FFRF was given access to the security footage. On Sat., March 28, at 1:13 p.m., three suspects were recorded removing the 20x30 inch sign, along with the easel it was propped on.

The suspects are two males and a female, all Caucasian. Footage reveals one male suspect struggling to remove the tape securing the sign to the easel. The additional suspects joined shortly after, and posed to take multiple “selfies” on a cellphone camera. The thief left via the Wisconsin Avenue exit and the others exited via the West Washington exit.

The thieves will be chagrined to learn that the wooden easel wasn’t FFRF property. The stolen easel was a rental from the Capitol Police Department.

This theft is considered a Class A misdemeanor, with a fine up to $10,000 or imprisonment for up to 9 months. 939.51(3)(a) (a).

FFRF is offering a total of $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the thief.

If you have any information pertaining to this theft, please contact FFRF.

FFRF is a national state/church watchdog with more than 22,000 members, including over 1,300 in Wisconsin.

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%250 %America/Chicago, %2015

Stop Voucher Expansion in Wisconsin

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take action now!

Wisconsin is Ground Zero in the attack on our public schools

Stop Governor Walker’s voucher expansion in Wisconsin

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Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s budget bill includes a disastrous proposal to expand the voucher program — raiding tax dollars from public schools and giving them to private (mostly religious) schools. Walker’s proposal would lift the 1,000-student cap on statewide private school tuition vouchers, opening the floodgates for state funding of religious schools. In the recently expanded statewide voucher system, 100% of the state-funded schools are Christian, and 73% of students attend Roman Catholic schools. The state must end this pernicious experiment to siphon funds from our public schools to fund church-run, religiously-segregated schools.

Walker's proposal could destroy our public schools. Up to 40% of Wisconsin K-12th grade students would be eligible to leave public schools, taking public funding with them to enrich parochial and other private schools. In Madison, more than 12,500 students would be eligible for vouchers under Walker's budget bill. Almost half of the students within the Madison Metropolitan School District could leave it at public expense! Public schools are governed by publicly elected school boards and are subject to open meetings and records laws. Where public money goes, public accountability ought to follow. Taxpayers have no means to monitor the voucher schools that they fund, which have been rife with abuses, including fraud, failures, teaching of creationism, etc. 

You can help stop Walker’s brazen attack on public education! If you only take action on one state/church issue this year, make it be this one. (Scroll below to find FAQs and talking points).

contact your state legislators 

Find your state legislator here

(Type your full address in the small searchbox at far right above map.)

Click here to contact your Assemblyperson.

Click here to contact your State Senator.

Phone the Wisconsin Legislative Hotline 

In Madison, dial 266-9960
Statewide 1-800-362-9472

contact the joint finance committee

The Wisconsin Legislature’s powerful Joint Committee on Finance is seeking comments from the public now. Ask the committee to delete Walker’s voucher expansion provision:


Joe Malkasian, Committee Clrk
Joint Committee on Finance
Room 305 East
State Capitol
Madison WI 53702
608/264-8314 

contact the governor's office

Governor Scott Walker
Office of Governor Scott Walker
115 East Capitol
Madison, WI 53702
(608) 266-1212

Faqs and more background on why vouchers hurt our public schools

Read our brief FAQ on the problems with the Wisconsin voucher program.

Read a detailed FAQ on the problems with all voucher programs.

Read FFRF’s letter to the Legislature on why Wisconsin’s “experiment” in vouchers should be ended.

talking points

To email your legislator, the governor or Joint Finance Committee. Feel free to cut and paste any wording below:

As a Wisconsin citizen, taxpayer and your constituent, I urge you to take action to remove Governor Walker’s irresponsible voucher expansion language from the budget proposal. End Wisconsin’s disastrous experiment with school vouchers, which raid our public schools to enrich largely religious private schools at taxpayer expense. Walker’s expansion is a brazen attack on our public, secular school system. I join the call for a legislative investigation into voucher fraud and an end to school voucher expansion. Where public money goes, public accountability should follow. Please act now to protect our public schools.

view ffrf's anti voucher tv spots

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