WASHINGTON, D.C. - Family Research Council congratulated Toni Richardson and the First Liberty Institute on their hard-fought victory for religious freedom. Today, after over a year-long dispute between Richardson and the Augusta School Department, Toni’s First Amendment rights were finally honored after being reprimanded and threatened by the department for privately telling a fellow employee “I will pray for you.” The Augusta School Department sent First Liberty client Toni Richardson a new memorandum that removed language banning Richardson from making any “faith-based statements” and threatened further disciplinary action or dismissal if she made such statements.
Travis Weber, Director of the Center for Religious Liberty at the Family Research Council, released the following statement:
“We praise Toni Richardson for her courage and persistence, which, with the help of the First Liberty Institute, moved the Augusta School Department to respect her freedom of speech and religion.
“It’s a sad commentary about where we are as a nation that trying to encourage someone by telling them you are ‘praying for them’ would even draw a complaint. Thankfully, this matter was resolved in favor of freedom, but we must remain ever vigilant,” concluded Weber.