The Trump administration is continuing to advocate on behalf of religious rights in America. The U.S. Labor Department is proposing a new rule that may give religious companies and groups something they have long sought: The ability to refuse employment to those who do not pass a “religious litmus test.”
The Trump administration has determined that trying to serve the needs of one group can punish another, and such is the case when it comes to religious groups.
In the government’s efforts to apply equality to those in the LGBTQ community when it comes to hiring, they have focused on one group at the expense of the rights of religious organizations and companies. In order to prevent discrimination against one group, it has ended up discriminating against another—people of faith.
Under the Trump administration’s new proposal, it would allow religious companies and groups to factor in religion when deciding to hire an employee. In essence, employers would have the ability to apply a “religious litmus test.”
The U.S. Department of Labor said in a statement, that under its new rule, groups that identify as religious “may make employment decisions consistent with their sincerely held religious tenets and beliefs without fear of sanction by the federal government.”
According to the text of the proposed rule, the Labor Department says the following:
“[The rule] proposes to define Particular religion to clarify that the religious exemption allows religious contractors not only to prefer in employment individuals who share their religion but also to condition employment on acceptance of or adherence to religious tenets as understood by the employing contractor.”
The Department of Labor said that the new rules are intended to update legal language that will align with recent decisions made in cases by the Supreme Court, as well as, executive orders issued by President Donald Trump.
The new rule proposed by the Labor Department will have a three-part test of religion definition that will determine if an entity is religious, and thereby qualified to be allowed to hire employees whose beliefs are consistent with that entities beliefs and tenants:
(1) Whether the entity was organized for a religious purpose.
(2) Whether the entity publicly presents itself as religious.
(3) Whether the entity engages in the exercise of religion.