Thursday, March 28, 2013

District Court Enjoins County's Opening of Meetings With Christian Prayers

In Hudson v. Pittsylvania County, Virginia, (WD VA, March 27, 2013), a Virginia federal district court issued a permanent injunction against the prayer policy of the Board of Supervisors of Pittsylvania County, Virginia.  Prior to the entry of a preliminary injunction in Feb. 2012 (see prior posting), the Board consistently opened each meeting with a prayer offered by a Board member and making specific Christian references. The court held that plaintiff, a non-Christian who attends Board meetings, has standing to sue. It concluded that the Board's sectarian prayers violate the Establishment Clause. The court's injunction prohibits the Board "from repeatedly opening its meetings with prayers associated with any one religion." An ACLU press release discusses the court's decision. [Thanks to Scott Mange for the lead.]