VA governor signs bill protecting churches from discrimination during emergencies
The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Legal Counsel Greg Chafuen regarding Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s signing Sunday of HB 2171, a bill that ensures churches are allowed to remain open during a state of emergency on the same or better terms as other businesses and services:
“Houses of worship and religious organizations provide soul-sustaining operations that are essential to our society and protected by the First Amendment. While public officials have the authority and responsibility to protect public health and safety, the First Amendment prohibits the government from treating churches worse than shopping centers, restaurants, or gyms. This bill takes the modest step of ensuring that officials cannot use a public crisis to discriminate against religious services in churches and other houses of worship. We commend Gov. Youngkin and the Virginia General Assembly for taking action to defend religious freedom in Virginia.”
- Pronunciation guide: Chafuen (CHAFF’-wen)
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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Greg Chafuen serves as legal counsel for Alliance Defending Freedom’s Center for Legislative Advocacy. He focuses on legislation impacting religious liberty at the state level. Prior to joining ADF, Chafuen spent three years as a white-collar defense litigator at Weil, Gotshal & Manges in Washington, D.C. and one year as a law clerk to the Hon. Alice Batchelder on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit. Chafuen earned his J.D. from Notre Dame Law School, graduating cum laude in 2015. While at Notre Dame, he served as president of the Notre Dame chapter of the Federalist Society, a member of a journal’s editorial board, and a member of the moot court board. He is a 2013 Blackstone Fellow and a Rumsfeld Foundation Fellow. Chafuen is admitted to the bars of Virginia and Washington, D.C.