religious freedom

Stephen Koranda, File Photo / Kansas Public Radio

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback has signed into law a so-called campus religious freedom bill. Critics say the law allows tax dollars to support campus organizations that discriminate in their membership. But Brownback says this legislation protects the rights of religious groups.

“You should be able to associate. You should be able to have public organizations that have sets of values and beliefs. This is very narrowly targeted, I think it’s responsibly targeted,” Brownback says.

Stephen Koranda

The Kansas House has advanced a bill that supporters say protects religious organizations at colleges. Proponents of the so-called campus religious freedom bill say it protects student groups from being forced by universities to allow anyone to join.

Republican Rep. Joseph Scapa supports the bill.

“Religious Groups should be free to require their members and leaders to share the group’s faith. That’s the entire point of having the group,” Scapa says.

Stephen Koranda / KPR

The Kansas Statehouse filled with more than 1,000 people opposing government policies that they say hamper religious freedom.

Speakers at yesterday’s rally criticized requirements that businesses offer certain types of birth control coverage in their health insurance. A florist from Washington state told the crowd that she was sued for refusing to provide flowers for a same-sex wedding.

Stephen Koranda / KPR

So-called religious freedom legislation and same-sex marriage were the talk of a Kansas Statehouse committee yesterday. The idea behind religious freedom legislation is that it could protect people who are opposed to same-sex marriage on religious grounds.

A Washington state florist who was sued for refusing to provide flowers for a same sex wedding urged Kansas lawmakers to protect businesses like hers.

Stephen Koranda

A lawmaker in the Kansas House warns that a campus religious freedom bill could attract national attention like the type that has been aimed at Indiana recently. The Kansas bill would bar colleges from taking action against religious student groups that want to exclude people from their organization.

Republican Representative Stephanie Clayton urged her colleagues to vote against the bill in a House committee.

“If we pass this, we might face national backlash. It could have an adverse effect on the Kansas economy,” says Clayton.

Religious Freedom Preservation Act Signed

Apr 10, 2013

Gov. Sam Brownback has signed legislation that supporters say will shield Kansas residents from government infringement on religious liberties.