She’s not backing down from her beliefs
Alaska Airlines fired dedicated flight attendant Lacey Smith for expressing her religious beliefs. The firing was in direct violation of federal civil rights law which prohibits workplace religious discrimination. Woke madness is now governing our nation’s companies from the boardroom to the break room, and it’s forcing Lacey to choose between her job and her faith.
Can the government force Americans to choose between their faith and their livelihood?
Can the government force you to act against your conscience—to say or do something that directly conflicts with your religious beliefs? These are the questions at the heart of our case for Melissa Klein, award-winning cake artist and former owner of SweetCakes by Melissa. The state of Oregon imposed a $135,000 penalty and told her she needed “rehabilitation” for simply running her family business according to her religious beliefs. Now, 9 years later—after being forced to close her business and enduring violent death threats—she is still searching for justice, still waiting for the courts to recognize her constitutional right to stand by her faith as she runs her business.
Americans do not give up their religious freedom when they join the military
First Liberty represents 35 U.S. Navy SEALs who are being threatened with punishment, involuntary separation or even court-martial. Why? Because they are seeking a legal, religious accommodation to the military vaccine mandate. And it’s not only the Navy SEALs themselves who face harassment, but also their families. First Liberty has documentation from the Dept. of Defense stating that military service members and their dependents (who are not subject to military orders) cannot travel until they are vaccinated.
USPS Delivers Discrimination
Gerald Groff was forced to quit his job as a postal carrier because of his religious beliefs. He believes in the Christian Sabbath, but the USPS refused his religious accommodation request not to work on Sundays after initially granting his request. We’re fighting this blatant discrimination at the U.S. Supreme Court, making it clear that federal law requires reasonable religious accommodations.
State Officials Fumble Free Speech & Religious Liberty
First Liberty represents Cambridge Christian School, who was told by the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) that it could not pray over the loudspeaker before kickoff of its state championship football game. Officials outrageously argued that prayer was an “endorsement” of religion since it would be taking place on government property. Their actions are illegal and unconstitutional—which is why we’re fighting in federal appeals court to bring justice to our clients.
Coach Kennedy’s WON at the U.S. Supreme Court
If there’s someone who knows how to fight for what you believe in, it’s Coach Joe Kennedy. He is a man of heroic persistence and courage—willing to stand his ground even after being fired for simply kneeling in silent prayer. Although the courts denied his constitutional rights, Coach Joe—a former Marine—didn’t back down. And now, he’s finally got victory at the highest court in the country
U.S. Airmen Grounded for Refusing to Violate their Faith
First Liberty represents several U.S. Air Force service members whose careers and livelihoods are being threatened. Why? Because they are seeking a legal, religious accommodation to the military vaccine mandate. Our attorneys filed a federal lawsuit against the Department of Defense (DoD) and Secretary of the Air Force to stop them from discriminating against our clients. This punishing of service members is outrageous—and illegal
Maine School Choice case won at the U.S. Supreme Court
In 1903, Maine passed a law ensuring all children would have access to education. But not every community had enough money—or students—to justify building their own schools. To this day, when a school district does not provide a public high school to educate the district’s students, Maine helps fund tuition to any public or private school families choose—unless it is a religious school. First Liberty and Institute for Justice won this case at the U.S. Supreme Court and protected the rights of parents to choose the best schools for their children.
A decades-old tradition of military members strengthening their faith with Scripture—now under attack by rogue anti-faith activists
Our service members love, want and have worn Shields of Strength for decades. That’s why we’re fighting to make sure this outside, anti-faith group doesn’t get away with such blatant religious discrimination.
Faith has a long history in America’s military. Forcing Shields of Strength to pull its dog tags isn’t just harsh and unkind—it’s illegal. The fact is, it’s perfectly constitutional for Americans who love their country to encourage military members with inspirational religious messages.
They picked a fight with the wrong veteran
For decades, service members and their families have displayed “Remembrance Tables” at various veterans’ facilities to honor prisoners of war and those missing in action.
First Liberty Institute–led by LtCol USMCR Mike Berry, FLI’s General Counsel–is fighting to stop a group of deceptively-named activists called the Military Religious Freedom Foundation who have filed a lawsuit demanding that a veteran’s Bible be removed from a POW/MIA Remembrance Table in Manchester, New Hampshire.
But they picked a fight with the wrong veteran, a beloved American hero who has the unwavering support of our firm—U.S. Army Air Corps Technical Sergeant (TSgt) Herman “Herk” Streitburger, who graciously donated the Bible as a symbol of the faith that sustained him through a year in captivity at a German prison camp during World War II.
Banning a blind woman?
Gail Blair, a blind woman in her 60s, loved to spend time at the park and share her faith with those who would listen. But recently, she was confronted by the police and banned from entering a public park for the alleged “crime” of sharing her faith with other people. In fact, in a brazen display of religious discrimination, park officials banned Gail from entering the local public library as well as the park.
This act of discrimination goes directly against the constitutional freedom of religion that America is based upon. Talking about your faith in a public park should never be a crime–it’s a quintessential forum for free speech. First Liberty will fight for Gail and all who wish to share their faith for as long as it takes in order to preserve this right.
Discrimination is the Wrong Prescription
Robyn Strader—a nurse practitioner with multiple, advanced degrees—was fired from CVS Pharmacy after CVS had accommodated her religious beliefs without issue for six and a half years. Why? Because CVS wants to force its employees to prescribe contraception even when it violates the employee’s religious beliefs.
CVS taking adverse action against a religious employee isn’t just outrageous and unnecessary. It’s illegal. Federal law is clear: Employers may not fire, demote, refuse a promotion, or otherwise take adverse action against employees because of religious beliefs that they could accommodate. There’s no legitimate reason for CVS to now go back on its word and force Robyn out of her job.