State Representative Nino Vitale (R-Urbana) will soon be introducing a bill that will protect pastors, ministers and members of the clergy and any associated property from lawsuits. This protection will allow these individuals to exercise religious liberty and only perform ceremonies if they are in line with their deeply held religious beliefs. Ohio’s pastors and church organizations should not be forced to violate their conscience.
Ohio currently protects the personal convictions and conscientious objections of all citizens in many other areas of the revised code. This measure just clarifies that these individuals need not be concerned about being sued if they are acting as they believe is right.
“This is not an issue of discrimination,” Vitale said. “It is an issue of protection; protection for those who have committed their lives to the service of God and their community.”
Similar legislation in Texas has passed both chambers with overwhelming bi-partisan support and has now been signed by the Governor and will soon become law. This has also passed at least one chamber in Tennessee, Oklahoma and Alabama.