FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Howie Beigelman
March 4, 2009
ORTHODOX UNION IN ANNAPOLIS DEFENDING RELIGIOUS LIBERTY
OU Defends Workplace Religious Freedom Act in Maryland
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, advocated before the Maryland General Assembly on crucial religious liberty legislation.
The OU testified before the House Economic Matters Committee in support of HB 13, the Workplace Religious Freedom Act (sponsored by Del. Roger Manno), legislation it assisted Delegate Manno in crafting.
WRFA, modeled on similar bipartisan supported legislation enacted in Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York, would allow employees reasonable accommodations in observing their faith in the workplace, such as wearing a kippa, turban or headscarf, or to take time off to observe the Sabbath or a holy day.
Howie Beigelman, OU Deputy Director of Public Policy stated:
No one should be forced to choose between their job or their faith. Sadly, both federal law and Maryland law currently offer no protection to religiously observant individuals. Maryland, since the time of the second Lord Baltimore was a leader in protecting religious liberty for over 350 years; we urge the Legislature to reclaim this leadership position again and protect the rights of all Marylanders of faith while on the job.