Religious Liberty

Support the ACLU's work protecting our religious freedom.

The ACLU works to ensure religious liberty by maintaining the wall of separation between church and state. The ACLU is not not anti-religion but believe that government must strictly avoid endorsing any religion, and should not be seen as expressing hostility towards religion or any religious sect. By ensuring government neutrality in religious matters, the First Amendment protects members of small or unpopular religions from being subjected to oppression or isolation from their government, which should be representing all and not taking sides on religious matters. The principle further protects the majority religion from being politicized by the government, and guarantees the right of all persons to practice their religion freely and without government interference.

Boudlal v. Disney is a lawsuit against the Walt Disney Corporation for religious discrimination.

Fazaga v. FBI is a case against the Federal Bureau of Investigation for illegally spying on the Muslim community in Orange County, California. An FBI informat spied on Muslims for months without cause.

Hamdi v. U.S.C.I.S. is a lawsuit against the U.S.C.I.S. for unlawfully delaying Tarek Hamdi’s application for naturalization for being of the Muslim faith.

Islamic Shura Council v. FBI is a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit to force the government to reveal information about the FBI’s surveillance of several prominent, law-abiding Muslim community leaders and organizations.

Khatib v. County of Orange is a lawsuit charging that Orange County violated the right to religious expression of Souhair Khatib. Khatib, a practicing Muslim woman, was forced to remove her hijab when taken into custody at an Orange County courthouse holding facility.

In the Mojave Cross case, the ACLU argued in the United States Supreme Court that a stand-alone Latin cross in the Mojave National Preserve is not an appropriate national memorial to American veterans. Read more about Mojave Cross.

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The ACLU of Southern California Religious Liberty Team

  • Belinda Escobosa Helzer
  • Peter Eliasberg
  • Ahilan Arulanantham
  • Jennie Pasquarella
  • Jessica Price
  • Peter Bibring