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NY continues effort to force religious groups to hire outside their faith

ADF attorneys available for media interviews following hearing Thursday
CompassCare, a pregnancy care center in Rochester, New York.

WHO: Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys

WHAT: Available for media interviews following hearing in CompassCare v. Hochul

WHEN: Immediately following hearing, which begins at 10 a.m. EST, Thursday, Dec. 14

WHERE: U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit, Thurgood Marshall U.S. Courthouse, 40 Foley Square, New York, Courtroom 1505; or view the livestream. To schedule an interview, contact ADF Media Relations Manager Bernadette Tasy at (480) 356-0324.

NEW YORK – Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys will be available for media interviews Thursday following oral arguments at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in CompassCare v. Hochul. ADF attorneys represent CompassCare, a faith-based pregnancy center in Rochester; First Bible Baptist Church; and the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates, an association of pro-life pregnancy centers. All of these groups are nonprofits seeking to protect their freedom to employ individuals who agree with their fundamental beliefs and missions.

At issue is a New York state law, SB 660, which requires all employers—including churches, religious schools, faith-based pregnancy care centers, and religious nonprofits—to undermine their own beliefs about abortion, contraception, and sexual morality by forcing them to employ those who refuse to abide by the organizations’ statements of faith and core principles about such issues. The law violates the groups’ First Amendment rights.

“Religious employers must be able to continue to hire like-minded individuals who share their core beliefs, and no government can force faith-based organizations to contradict those convictions,” said ADF Senior Counsel Caleb Dalton, who will be arguing before the court. “We are asking the 2nd Circuit to uphold the constitutionally protected freedoms of our clients as they fulfill their critical service to the community.”

ADF attorneys asked a federal district court to rule that New York’s SB 660 violates the groups’ freedom of speech, religion, and association. The court declined to do so in full, which led to the appeal, though the court did rule that a requirement that the law be communicated to employees in employee handbooks was unconstitutional.

James P. Trainor, one of nearly 5,000 attorneys in the ADF Attorney Network, is serving as local counsel in the case.

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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Caleb Dalton
Caleb Dalton
Senior Counsel
Caleb Dalton serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, where he plays a key role at the Center for Academic Freedom.