Even a church could be seen as a place of public accommodation if it holds a secular event, such as a spaghetti supper, that is open to the general public.The revised Gender Identity Guidance reads:
The law does not apply to a religious organization if subjecting the organization to the law would violate the organization’s First Amendment rights. See Donaldson v. Farrakhan, 436 Mass. 94 (2002). However, a religious organization may be subject to the Commonwealth’s public accommodations law if it engages in or its facilities are used for a “public, secular function.” Id.Originally a page on the Attorney General's website had made a categorical reference to "houses of worship" as an example of a "place of public accommodation." That reference has been dropped. A letter from the chief of the state's Civil Rights Division explained why the changes were made.