A deeply divided Supreme Court ruled late last June in the “Hobby Lobby” case that companies can deny coverage of certain birth control methods if the company’s owners oppose them on religious grounds. While the ruling seemed quite narrow, many seasoned observers of the Court cautioned that the “religious exemption” could be extended to many areas of social welfare in which religions take a stand, notably GLBT rights.
So sweeping were the potential ramifications of the ruling that some gay rights organizations have withdrawn their support for the Employment Nondiscrimination Act (ENDA) that they’ve been fighting for at the federal level for years. This is because the current bill includes a religious exemption that could now be interpreted broadly by organizations to deny equal treatment of GLBT people.
Following is a statement issued by Lambda Legal explaining their decision to withdraw their support for ENDA.