Thursday, May 03, 2007

Suit Challenges Indiana Social Service Agency's Hiring of Chaplain

In March 2006, Indiana's Family and Social Services Administration employed Rev. Michael Latham, a Baptist minister, as its chaplain to travel across the state to counsel FSSA workers during a time of rapid changes in the agency. Latham also recruits volunteer clergy of other faiths to provide counseling. Yesterday, according to the Associated Press, the Freedom From Religion Foundation filed suit in federal district court in Indianapolis claiming that the hiring of Latham was unconstitutional under the federal and state constitutions. The suit alleges that his hiring had no secular purpose and creates excessive entanglement between government and religion.