Skip to content

NY’s Broome Community College shuts door on everyone to keep church out

School opts to close facilities on weekends so church can’t meet

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. — Just two days after attorneys with the Alliance Defense Fund filed a lawsuit so that churches can rent facilities at Broome Community College in the same way that other groups are allowed to, the college’s executive council has voted to prevent anyone from renting the school’s facilities on weekends.

“Churches shouldn’t be discriminated against for their beliefs. Rather than protect this basic constitutional principle, the council chose to make the entire community suffer by denying everyone access to the school’s facilities,” said ADF Litigation Counsel Daniel Blomberg. “Such a disappointing move does not reflect well upon Broome’s desire to serve the community.”

North Pointe Church had been regularly holding meetings in a rented facility on the Broome Community College campus for several months. But college officials invoked a ban on “religious services” and barred the church from continuing to rent space there after a few members of the public complained to the college about a church meeting in a public facility.

ADF attorneys, along with local counsel Raymond Dague of Syracuse, filed a lawsuit shortly thereafter, seeking a temporary restraining order that would have allowed the church to continue meeting at the campus. ADF attorneys argued that churches have equal access to public facilities under the law and cannot be discriminated against because of the religious nature of their meetings--especially as paying customers.

The lawsuit, North Pointe Church v. Moppert, was filed with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York on Feb. 24.

ADF is a legal alliance of Christian attorneys and like-minded organizations defending the right of people to freely live out their faith. Launched in 1994, ADF employs a unique combination of strategy, training, funding, and litigation to protect and preserve religious liberty, the sanctity of life, marriage, and the family.