A group of pastors in Houston, Texas are suing the city of Austin so they can discriminate against LGBTI people and women.
The U.S. Pastor Council is a nonprofit organization, and they have a problem with Austin’s anti-discrimination hiring ordinance. They were also the group behind Texas’ bathroom bill, which ultimately failed.
Austin’s new ordinance protects LGBTI people, women, and other marginalized groups from facing discrimination while applying for jobs.
The pastors, however, believe the ordinance’s lack of exemptions for religious groups violates both state and federal laws.
In the lawsuit, the Council states their reasons for not wanting to hire LGBTI people and women — and it all comes down to the Bible.
Due to their member churches relying on ‘the Bible rather than modern-day cultural fads for religious and moral guidance’, they refuse to hire ‘practicing homosexuals or transgendered people’ as clergy or for any other church appointment.
They also believe the Bible ‘forbids a woman to serve in the role of senior pastor’.
David Welch, Executive Director of the Council, wrote a letter to the Austin City Council about the ordinance.
‘These are the stingiest religious exemptions we have ever seen in an anti-discrimination law. It is inexcusable that you would purport to subject a church’s hiring decisions to your city’s antidiscrimination ordinance,’ he wrote.
Austin, however, is standing by their ordinance.
‘The ordinance reflects our values and culture respecting the dignity and rights of every individual,’ said city spokesperson David Green. ‘We are prepared to vigorously defend the City against this challenge to the City’s civil rights protections.’
H/t: KUT News