FFRF, coalition sues over Louisiana law requiring public schools to display 10 Commandments

  • A group of nine Louisiana families with children in public schools filed suit in federal court today to block HB 71, a new state law requiring all public elementary, secondary, and postsecondary schools to display the Ten Commandments in every classroom.
  • In their complaint filed today in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana, the plaintiffs, who are Jewish, Christian, Unitarian Universalist and nonreligious, assert that the newly enacted statute violates longstanding U.S. Supreme Court precedent and the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment. More than 40 years ago, in Stone v. Graham, the Supreme Court overturned a similar state law, holding that the separation of church and state bars public schools from posting the Ten Commandments in classrooms. No other state requires the Ten Commandments to be displayed in public schools. The plaintiffs in Roake v. Brumley are represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana, Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the Freedom from Religion Foundation, with Simpson Thacher Bartlett LLP serving as pro bono counsel.

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