ACLU Supports Students' Right of Religious Freedom
Opposes school decision to ban students from wearing certain Christian religious symbols
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
COLORADO SPRINGS – The Colorado Springs Gazette has reported that a local middle school has announced a policy forbidding students from wearing certain Christian symbols to school, unless they are worn underneath clothing.
The ACLU strongly opposes the decision of Colorado Springs School District 11 on the basis of religious liberty.
Mark Silverstein, Legal Director of the ACLU said, “The First Amendment protects the right of students to express their faith by wearing crosses, rosaries, or other religious symbols without interference from school officials. Our Constitution protects the right to individual religious liberty and the ACLU is here to support everyone who chooses to exercise that right.”
“For over 90 years the ACLU has always defended the religious liberty of all Americans. It is one of the most fundamental of our nation’s freedoms,” said ACLU Executive Director Ray Drew.
According to the Gazette, Monsignor Bob Jaeger of the Catholic Diocese of Colorado Springs has stated that the church is OK with the school’s position and Colorado Springs School District 11 spokesperson Elaine Naleski states that this policy is necessary to prevent the use of crosses and rosaries as gang symbols.
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The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America.
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The ACLU strives to safeguard the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious liberty by ensuring that laws and governmental practices neither promote religion nor interfere with its free exercise.