What: All Issues : Labor Rights : Rights of Individuals in the Workplace : H.R. 27. Jobs/Vote on Amendment to Remove Provision Permitting Religious Groups to Obtain Federal Job-Training Funds While Discriminating in Their Hiring on the Basis of Religion. (2005 house Roll Call 46)
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H.R. 27. Jobs/Vote on Amendment to Remove Provision Permitting Religious Groups to Obtain Federal Job-Training Funds While Discriminating in Their Hiring on the Basis of Religion.
house Roll Call 46     Mar 02, 2005
Progressive Position:
Yea
Progressive Result:
Loss

In this vote, the House defeated an amendment offered by Bobby Scott (D-VA) to remove language in the bill to reauthorize federal job-training programs that would permit religious groups to obtain federal job-training funds while discriminating in their hiring on the basis of religion. Scott and other Progressives claimed that retaining this language in the bill would permit a setback in the area of civil rights, because not only would churches and other religious organizations be permitted to turn away job applicants based on their religion, but such a practice could lead to discrimination in other areas as well. For example, Progressives noted, discrimination based on religion could lead to the hiring, with federal funds, of persons of only certain races or of only one gender (if an individual church or other organization included among its tenets superiority of one race, or permitted only men or only women to hold certain jobs). "[T]his bill would allow a religious organization that discriminates based on religion, like a Bob Jones University, to get taxpayer money and use that Federal funding to legally discriminate on religious grounds when hiring staff to carry out the job training programs and services in this bill." (James McGovern (D-MA).) Republicans countered that in fact it is current law that discriminates against religion by not permitting religious organizations to compete for federal funds with other organizations and that a few other federal programs already permit religious organizations to apply for funds. Progressives lost on this issue by a vote of 186 to 239, thus leaving in the bill language that would permit religious organizations to discriminate in their hiring with federal funds.

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