FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Howie Beigelman
March 5, 2009
ORTHODOX UNION DEFENDS RELIGIOUS LIBERTY IN THE HOME
Testifies in support of right to hang mezuzah, require reasonable accommodation of Sabbath observance in buildings, co-ops and condominiums
Yesterday, the Orthodox Union (Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America), the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, through its Institute for Public Affairs, testified in support of SB 730, legislation sponsored by Senator Jamie Raskin that would require reasonable accommodation in multifamily housing for religious observance, such as the right to hang a religious symbol (mezuzah, Christmas wreath, jhandee, etc.) and to have doors and elevators modified for Sabbath use. (The OU also submitted written testimony regarding the companion bill in the House, HB 690, sponsored by Delegate Sandy Rosenberg.)
Howie Beigelman, OU Deputy Director of Public Policy stated:
In the 21st Century, no one should be forced from their home because of their faith. Maryland passed an act of religious tolerance in 1649 but today, sadly, neither federal nor state law protects Marylanders of faith in their homes. We commend Senator Raskin and Delegate Rosenberg for acting to rectify this glaring omission. We urge the General Assembly to pass these bills quickly, restoring Maryland’s leadership position in protecting religious liberty.