Big Win for Religious Freedom as Judge Calls Out DOD for Not Following the Law Concerning Military Members and Covid Shot

Galatians 6:9-10 “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.

Important Takeaways:

  • Judge Rebukes Military as Service Members Score Huge Victory for Religious Freedom
  • Judge Steven Merryday issued a powerful order protecting the first two of our clients, Lt. Col. Mary* and Commander Charles,* both of whom were about to be disciplined by their respective military branches after their religious accommodation requests were denied.
  • We previously won a temporary injunction protecting these two distinguished service members. On Friday, Merryday extended the injunction for the duration of the case. He will soon rule on our remaining 29 plaintiffs and the entire class of service members.
  • The judge shredded Biden’s mandate, first by ruling “the defendants fail to articulate why Navy commander’s and lieutenant colonel 2’s sincerely held religious practice must yield to the requirement to accept COVID-19 vaccination.”
  • The religious accommodation request denial letters submitted by members of the various branches in our case showed that the military has been violating RFRA by issuing blanket “rubber-stamp” denials using “magic words.”
  • He added that using these blanket denials “illustrates that the military fails to afford an applicant an actual ‘case-by-case assessment’ as required by RFRA.”
  • “Requiring a service member either to follow a direct order contrary to a sincerely held religious belief or to face immediate processing for separation or other punishment undoubtedly causes irreparable harm,” wrote the court.
  • Since the Marines and the Navy failed to present evidence “to the individualized person” of Lt. Col. Mary and Commander Charles, they may: 1) continue to serve without the shots; and 2) the military may not take adverse or retaliatory action against them for refusing the COVID shots, filing their appeals or participating in this litigation.
  • This is a huge victory for military members and religious freedom!

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