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US House votes to eliminate religious freedom protections for faith-based social service providers

Friday, May 13, 2022

The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Gregory S. Baylor regarding the U.S. House of Representatives’ approval Friday of HR 5129, a bill that eliminates religious freedom protections for faith-based participants in the Community Services Block Grant program:

“Faith-based organizations contribute significantly to their communities by providing compassionate care to the most vulnerable among us. That’s exactly why faith-based social service providers participate in the Community Services Block Grant program. But now the House has voted to eliminate religious freedom protections for faith-based organizations who work through this program to serve the impoverished. Forcing faith-based organizations to choose between providing vital social services and operating according to their sincerely held religious beliefs only jeopardizes the communities these organizations serve. Further, the bill’s vague language regarding how funds may be used to ‘address health needs’ opens the door to allowing funding of organizations that perform abortions and surgeries designed to alter one’s biological sex. Taxpayer dollars should never be used to support such dangerous and divisive procedures. We commend the members of Congress who took a stand against this open hostility towards faith-based organizations by voting ‘no’ on this bill. We are hopeful the Senate will reject this dangerous legislation and instead vote in favor of policies that protect life and religious freedom.”

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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ABOUT Gregory S. Baylor

Gregory S. Baylor serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, where he is the director of the Center for Religious Schools and senior counsel with the Center for Public Policy. Since joining ADF in 2009, Baylor has focused on defending and advancing the religious freedom of faith-based educational institutions through advice, education, legislative and public advocacy, and representation in disputes. He has testified about religious liberty issues three times before congressional committees. Greg earned his Juris Doctor in 1990 from Duke University School of Law, where he graduated Order of the Coif, with high honors, and served on the editorial board of the Duke Law Journal. He received his bachelor’s degree in Honors English in 1987 from Dartmouth College. Following graduation from law school, he served as law clerk to the Hon. Jerry E. Smith on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit. He practiced labor and employment law at two large international law firms for three years before joining the staff of Christian Legal Society’s Center for Law and Religious Freedom, where he served for 15 years prior to joining ADF.