National Religious Liberty Leader Applauds Trump Administration for Preventing Discrimination Under CARES Act

Preexisting rules could have been used to prevent religious groups from receiving aid


WASHINGTON, April 03, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, First Liberty Institute commended the U.S. Small Business Administration (“SBA”) for quickly adopting an interim rule that ensures churches and faith-based ministries can participate in the recently passed CARES Act.

“We applaud the Trump Administration for addressing this issue within 24 hours. It demonstrates the administration’s continued commitment to religious liberty,” said Kelly Shackelford, President, CEO, and Chief Counsel at First Liberty Institute, a national religious liberty law firm who raised concerns Wednesday morning that an outdated SBA regulation might exclude faith-based organizations from participating in the CARES Act stimulus package.

The CARES Act makes Small Business Administration loans available as part of the stimulus/recovery program. But preexisting federal regulations prohibited some churches and ministries from becoming federal financial assistance recipients. However, an Interim Final Rule published by the SBA ensures that churches and faith-based ministries are eligible to receive loans as part of the CARES Act. Churches and ministries across the nation are providing essential services to millions of Americans impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

About First Liberty Institute
First Liberty Institute is a non-profit public interest law firm and the largest legal organization in the nation dedicated exclusively to defending religious freedom for all Americans.

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