Republicans Create Bill That Would Allow Employers To Fire Single Mothers
Republican lawmakers are lobbying for a bill,the First Amendment Defense Act, that “prohibits the federal government from taking discriminatory action against a person — which is defined to include for-profit corporations — acting in accordance with a religious belief that favors so-called traditional marriage. This means the feds can’t revoke a nonprofit’s tax-exempt status or end a company’s federal contract over this issue. The bill specifically protects those who believe that marriage is between “one man and one woman” or that “sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage.” The legislation comes on the heels of the United States Supreme Court deciding to lift its ban against same-sex marriage.
This bill sanctions employers to fire employees who are from the LGBTQ community, along with women who become pregnant out of wedlock. Though these cases seem extreme, there have been recent incidents that prove otherwise. A Montana Catholic school teacher was fired for having a baby out of wedlock. She filed a discrimination charge last year with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
According to Jezebel, this bill will also allow government-funded religious organizations (homeless shelters and drug treatment programs, for example) to turn away LGBTQ people from their facilities, refusing them the help they need.
During an interview with Senator Mike Lee from Utah, NPR asked him about religious universities firing unmarried female employees if they conceived but were not married. Senator Lee responded, “There are colleges and universities that have a religious belief that sexual relations are to be reserved for marriage…they ought to be protected in their religious freedom.”
The Hill reports thta the number of GOP co-sponsors for the bill is 115. Unfortunately, the legislation is gaining support and GOP leaders plan to vote on it this month.