Discriminating Against Us

2016-0412 Stop Discrimination

According to a judge, discriminating against people with disabilities is legal.

The ABC News article is short, but I had to read it twice because I could not believe I read it correctly the first time. When I read the article again, I immediately knew I had to share the story. According the recent ruling by a judge, everything we thought was true about disability law is not true. The general perception is the law applies to all companies and organization unless they were specifically exempt due to the age of the establishment or a few other situations. According to the judge, religious institutions are exempt from disability law.

The ruling makes two facts clear.

  1. A religious institution was sued because it chose to discriminate rather than accommodate a person with disabilities
  2. Religious institutions may discriminate against a people with disabilities

Perhaps, one of you could explain this to me. Why did a religious organization discriminate? Why did the organization feel so strongly about its position that it chose to litigate rather than accommodate? Why did the judge rule against the party representing the victim of discrimination?

According to the judge, law supports discrimination. Either the law or the ruling is wrong. There is no reason religious institutions, or anybody else, should be legally allowed to discriminate. Granting a license to discriminate is unethical regardless of whether or not laws allow it or courts enforce it.


Click here to read another Beyond Adversity post.

Thanks to ABC News for covering the story; Google for helping me find the story; and all the people who, directly and indirectly, made it possible to include the picture and text in this post.


    1. Meg, I have been looking for the story, but I have not found it. However, I found the code which does not mention private religious schools. My guess is the school in question was a private religious school. Since there is no mention of private religious schools in the code, my guess is the judge simply allowed the private religious school to discriminate because there is no reference saying they cannot. As such, a private religious school may discriminate against anything it wants — including disabilities.

      According to a summary of the law, “Public primary and secondary schools, as well as public colleges and universities, should be open to all members of the public, regardless of their faith. Students should not face discrimination or harassment because of their faith background, their beliefs, their distinctive religious dress, or their religious expression.”

      I will continue searching for another explanation.

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