Today, the Supreme Court began hearing arguments in two cases that could radically shape the civil rights of millions of workers nationwide. 

The two cases–Our Lady of Guadalupe School v. Morrissey-Berru and St. James School v. Biel–concern the right of religiously-affiliated employers to defy civil rights law in employment decisions, specifically the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Americans With Disabilities Act. 

The ruling could gravely impact the civil rights of millions of workers, including one million employees of religiously-affiliated hospitals.  

The following is a statement from Fatima Goss Graves, President and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center: 

“Allowing employers to subvert the civil rights of their employees will worsen the prejudice and bias these very laws were written to prevent. These cases threaten decades of social progress for millions of workers—including essential workforces currently in the direct path of an unprecedented pandemic. We urge the Justices to avoid risking the livelihood of those risking their lives and ensure that working people across our country can continue to depend on fundamental civil rights protections.“

An amici curiae brief was filed by the National Women’s Law Center, The Leadership Conference on Civil & Human Rights, and 68 other civil rights leaders urging the Court to side with the employees. The full brief can be read here

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