January 13, 2012

Mitch Mirviss quoted in The NonProfit Times on Supreme Court’s unanimous “ministerial exception” decision

1 min

Venable partner Mitch Mirviss was quoted in a January 12, 2012 article in The NonProfit Times on a recent decision by the Supreme Court to allow a “ministerial exception” to employment discrimination laws for religious organizations. In a unanimous decision, the Court affirmed the right of religious entities to choose who will preach their beliefs, teach their faith and carry out their mission.

Mirviss called the Court’s decision a “victory” for the First Amendment saying, “It’s a vindication for all those who have asked for a vigorous application of the First Amendment for religious institutions.” Mirviss added that it was appropriate for the Supreme Court to step in on this issue as these types of cases have been common for decades and the volume has been increasing. Adding that the Court’s decision was “very robust,” Mirviss does not see problems instituting the exception saying, “It seems to me there may be follow-up issues whether it applies to sexual discrimination or a state tort claim, but the decision spells out how courts should deal with these issues… The ruling gives these institutions sufficient leeway on how they should run their programs.”