TX Evangelicals Sue for the Right to Discriminate Against LGBTQ Job Candidates and Employees

Two evangelical non-profits have filed multiple lawsuits on this matter.

Texas Values and U.S. Pastors Council, both nonprofit evangelical groups, believe employers and businesses have legal discrimination rights against LGBTQ workers. They have filed multiple lawsuits both in the federal and state courts to this effect, claiming churches and Christian businesses have a constitutional right to sack or not employ LGBTQ personnel. The conservative Christian groups believe their religion supports them in such a move.

The U.S. Pastors Council prefers the courts to exempt all Christian employers from any sort of discrimination protection as per the Civil Rights Act, 1964. This revolutionary law made denying job opportunities to individuals due to their religion, gender, and race along with a number of protected traits, a criminal offense. The law, however, caters to an exemption applicable for churches when it came to the subject of hiring clergy members. An example, a Catholic parish could not be summoned in court for its refusal to hire any female priest. The Pastors Council holds the opinion that exemptions like these should be more so that Christian owned businesses and churches are not compelled to offer benefits to the same-sex spouse of an employee.

One particular lawsuit challenges the validity of the Civil Rights Act as laid down by the federal government. The law makes it illegal for any employer to indulge in discriminatory practices against any worker or candidate based on their race, religion, gender, and sex. Two other separate lawsuits want to dismantle in part a city ordinance passed by the City of Austin which bars employers from doing any discriminatory action against LGBTQ groups. The ordinance clearly states a number of protections based on "gender identity" and "sexual orientation.”

The Texas evangelical groups have become aggressive in recent times. Lawyers acting for Texas Values filed a lawsuit against the City of Austin on October 13, stating that the organization will not act in compliance with laws. The lawyers stated in their complaint that Texas Values will desist from hiring or retaining any transgendered people or practicing homosexuals as their employees. The sole reason for this decision is that the lifestyle of LGBTQ people is not in accordance with the Biblical understanding of gender and sexuality which Texas Values want to promote.

These lawsuits open a new war front in the numerous battles engaged by evangelicals against the civil rights movement of the LGBTQ people. Both conservative groups were vocal against the spread of popularly termed "bathroom bills.” These laws permit transgender people to take advantage of public restrooms labeled as their identified gender.

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