The HHS recently replaced a dangerous rule on conscience rights for medical workers from 2019, with a New Final rule aiming to remove aspects of it that encouraged discrimination while streamlining the complaint process. Continue reading
Previously, the Secular AZ blog has featured articles about minors’ rights in school and their right to access information. Adolescents also have unique concerns regarding their right to privacy in healthcare settings. The COVID-19 pandemic, culture wars around vaccines, and recent changes in abortion law have made confidentiality and consent issues particularly critical. The international human rights community recognizes confidentiality in health matters as a component of a youth’s fundamental right to privacy. Continue reading
On October 30, I wrote an article for the Secular AZ blog about the right to privacy that minors have in schools. But privacy isn’t our only concern when it comes to minors’ rights. The proliferation of extremist organizations like Moms for Liberty and other book banners has raised concerns about students’ access to diverse reading materials. Continue reading
This past September, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued warning letters to eight companies for manufacturing or marketing unapproved eye drops in violation of federal law. The eye drops in question, which include the brands EzriCare, Delsam, and Similasan, claim to be “homeopathic eye drop solutions” that purport to relieve dry eyes, pink eye, cataracts, styes, allergy symptoms, and computer eyes.
Public schools are required to be secular institutions. Because public schools are funded by taxpayers and because children are more impressionable than adults, these schools have a special obligation not to infringe on the religious rights of their students, parents, and teachers. But what are those rights? Can coaches pray at games or not? Can teachers talk about religion in class? Can students have bible club on campus? Continue reading
If you’ve ever attended a county board or a city council meeting, you may have been surprised to see the session start with a prayer. Isn’t it a violation of the Establishment Clause to pray at a public government meeting? Well, to use every lawyer’s favorite phrase, “It depends.” Continue reading
A message from our Executive Director:
On behalf of Secular AZ, we find that the lawsuit filed by Heather Rooks against the Peoria School district is another in a long string of bullying behaviors aimed at intimidation of the Board, a usurpation of legitimate authority, and an enforcement of Christian nationalists’ dogma. Continue reading
The laws against abortion that include a “fetal heartbeat” provision defy science, religion, and the law. There is no fetal tissue, no heart, and no heartbeat at the early stages of pregnancy to which these laws apply. Women are being forced to carry pregnancies based on a scientific lie.
No religious or societal consensus exists on when life begins or whether abortion is an allowable health choice. Women are forced to carry pregnancies based on the beliefs of one religion. Basing a law solely on the beliefs of one religion violates the Establishment Clause of the Constitution, because it cements into law the belief of that one religion that is contrary to the beliefs of many other religions and nonreligious people. It also violates the Free Exercise clause of the Constitution because people of any other religion or none are prohibited from practicing their religion as they see fit.
A few weeks ago, we accomplished something big. We called on Phoenix’s Washington Elementary School District to end a teacher training contract with the discriminatory Arizona Christian University, over its policies of hate and discrimination against LGBTQ+ people.
Unfortunately, it seems high-powered lawyers from hate group Alliance Defending Freedom have pressured the school district into reversing the decision. Continue reading
The religious right seems to have exposed its latest strategy in Phoenix school boards: drain money out of public schools by attracting as many lawsuits as possible. Continue reading
‘Tis the season for right-wingers to wallow in their persecution complex whenever a public entity acknowledges the existence of non-Christian beliefs! Continue reading