(LifeSiteNews) — It’s a win for the several pro-life witnesses harassed in the National Archives after this year’s March for Life.
On Thursday, the United States National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) consented to a preliminary injunction in a religious discrimination lawsuit, promising not to target pro-lifers in the future.
The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) filed a lawsuit last week on behalf of pro-lifers told to remove or cover up pro-life messages on their clothing while visiting the National Archives after the March for Life in Washington, D.C last month.
“We’ve obtained our first win in the NARA case, where a grandmother (our client) and her granddaughter were told to cover up or else remove their pro-life shirts—imagine someone telling your grandmother that in a public, federally funded museum,” ACLJ announced in a February 16 press release.
“Now the government has agreed to enter into a consent order requiring them to allow pro-lifers into their facility without issue and to provide every security officer and other visitor-facing employees with a copy of the consent order,” the release continues. “And as we demanded, NARA also has to apologize to our client for the stress and humiliation that was inflicted upon her and her granddaughter.”
The consent order states that current and future NARA employees who interact with the public are “preliminary enjoined from prohibiting visitors from wearing t-shirts, hats, buttons, etc., that display protest language, including religious and political speech.” The order remains active until an additional order overrides it, “a final judgment in this action” is determined, or until January 19, 2025.
Additionally, the National Archives Museum will be providing a “personal tour” of the facility for the plaintiffs today, who will also receive a “personal apology on that tour regarding the events” on January 20.
RELATED: Tens of thousands demand end to all abortion at first March for Life since fall of Roe
UPDATE (03/07/23): Walgreens won't dispense abortion pills in 20 states
The pressure is paying off. Walgreens' plan to dispense abortion pills nationwide is now in tatters, with the pharmaceutical giant announcing that it won't mail the pills to, or sell them within, 20 states.
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CVS & Walgreens announce plans to dispense abortion pills after Biden FDA loosens restrictions
“We’ve continually told you how the radical Left worships at the altar of abortion,” the ACLJ wrote. “Attacking kids, students, and grandparents, let alone any pro-life individuals or groups, is just the latest demonstration of the radical Left’s depravity when it comes to pushing its extreme anti-Life agenda. This is a big win and a clear message to the Deep State: Leave pro-lifers alone.”
The law firm also stated that this victory “does not signal the end of the case. In the weeks ahead, the ACLJ will be demanding answers on how and why such a clear violation of our clients’ rights occurred and who all was involved in the decision to target pro-life visitors.”
During the latest episode of the “Sekulow” radio show, ACLJ chief counsel Jay Sekulow said the victory over the Department of Justice (DOJ)-represented NARA was “a huge win.”
“When these students were harassed, we went to work quickly and we got a result very quickly,” he said. “It’s very important for conservatives and pro-life individuals, Christians, to speak out when their rights are being denied.”
Sekulow’s son Jordan, executive director of the ACLJ, added that the federal agency “could not keep track of classified documents but could put up a system of harassment against our clients who were students attending the March for Life.”
Prior to the consent order, NARA issued a general apology for having infringed upon the First Amendment rights of the pro-lifers. The National Archives admitted that the visitors did not break any policy or rules and stated that “as the home to the original Constitution and Bill of Rights, which enshrine the rights of free speech and religion, we sincerely apologize for this occurrence.”
In addition to the lawsuit against NARA, the ACLJ is representing another group of students and chaperones from South Carolina who faced similar discrimination on January 20. As previously reported by LifeSiteNews, pro-lifers from a Catholic school were kicked out of the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum for wearing hats with the words “Rosary PRO-LIFE” printed on them.
The lawsuit against the Smithsonian is ongoing.