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South Carolina is lobbying the Trump administration to legalize discrimination against Jewish foster parents

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South Carolina is lobbying on behalf of a Christian foster care agency to allow them to deny Jewish parents on the basis of faith.

The Intercept reported that the Trump administration is currently considering whether the Miracle Hill Ministries social services agency can continue receiving federal funds while “recruiting Christian foster families.”

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South Carolina and Miracle Hill have argued that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act — a law typically used in cases of Christian business owners who wish to deny services to LGBTQ people — “should not force a Protestant group to work with Jewish people if it violates a tenet of their faith,” the report noted.

The case revolves around Beth Lesser, a Jewish woman who was turned away by Miracle Hill after attending a three-day foster parent training. On the third day, two officials running the training (including one Miracle Hill representative) told the parents they would not be able to mentor or foster children if they weren’t Protestants.

Lesser, a supporter of Donald Trump’s, said that if the president knew about what Miracle Hill was doing, he would be against it. She and her husband, the Intercept noted, have been licensed foster parents for years and have fostered and mentored other children.

“I think that if Trump knew about this in detail, he wouldn’t be for it,” Lesser said. “Because he’s not a religious nut.”

The report noted that Miracle Hill’s provisional state licensure expired on July 25 and the Department of Social Services cannot issue the organization a permanent one unless it either proves it’s not discriminatory or a federal order is signed making an exception.

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“Such an order is already drafted,” the report continued. “It’s awaiting final signature on the desk of Secretary Alex Azar at the Department of Health and Human Services. If granted, Miracle Hill will be allowed to continue denying qualified families from adopting kids based on religious views.”

Read the entire report via The Intercept.

 


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