Religious School Cases May Reach Supreme Court, Catholic School Student Wins Right to State Tuition Benefit, Uighurs To Target Beijing Olympics Sponsors, Pakistan Seeks to Block U.S. Ahmadis Website, Becket 2020 Religious Freedom Findings, Small Business Administration Seeks Comment on Faith-Based Restrictions

Religious School Cases May Reach Supreme Court

By Patriarca12 via Wikimedia Commons

By Patriarca12 via Wikimedia Commons

The U.S. Supreme Court Ruled in Espinoza v Montana Dept. of Revenue that states providing funding for private schools cannot discriminate against private religious schools. That decision opened the door to numerous lawsuits, including two from Vermont and Maine, and if these are successful, more are likely to follow. The president of the American Federation of Teachers, criticized the latest Vermont lawsuit as a “cynical attempt” to use the Montana case “as a tool to syphon even more public money into private hands.”

Catholic School Student Wins Right to State Tuition Benefit

By Kit from Pittsburgh, USA

By Kit from Pittsburgh, USA

And in a related case to the item above, the Vermont family of a Catholic high school senior has won an appeal allowing their daughter to participate in a publicly funded college program. Only high school students from “publicly funded schools” were previously allowed into the program, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York City ruled that to exclude the student was a First Amendment violation.

Uighurs To Target Beijing Olympics Sponsors

Campaigners fighting against the persecution of Uighur Muslims in China say they will target private companies sponsoring the Beijing Winter Olympics in an attempt to persuade them to use their influence with the Chinese government ahead of the 2022 event.

Pakistan Seeks to Block U.S. Ahmadis Website
US on Pakistan: You Condone Religious ViolationsPakistan has ordered a U.S.-based website propagating the faith of Pakistan’s minority Ahmadis shut down over allegedly blasphemous content, one of the site’s managers said Thursday. Harris Zafar said Pakistan’s Telecommunication Authority earlier this month issued a legal notice for him and fellow American Amjad Mahmood Khan, who also manages Trueislam.com, demanding that the site be shut down. Zafar said the website is based in the U.S., where both he and Khan live and work, and called Pakistan’s action “a brazen act of suppression of freedom of expression and freedom of religion.”

Becket 2020 Religious Freedom Findings
LDS Mormon Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter Day Saints Supreme Court Ruling On Same Sex Marriage StatementThe Becket Religious Freedom Index for 2020 revealed that Americans weather storms anchored by faith. Both opinions on religious freedom and religion itself sustains them through difficult times. In addition, respondents support protections the reflect the reality of religious identity during quarantine. Finally, respondents perceived a leadership gap in protecting and defending racial justice and religious freedom.

Small Business Administration Seeks Comment on Faith-Based Restrictions

The U.S. Small Business Administration invites public comment on a proposed rule designed to remove regulatory provisions that exclude certain faith-based organizations from seven business loan and disaster assistance programs. These programs include the Intermediary Lending Program (ILP), Business Loan programs (7(a), Microloan and 504 programs), Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, Military Reservist Economic Injury Disaster Loan (MREIDL) program and Immediate Disaster Assistance Program (IDAP).