Gov. McMaster signs Religious Freedom Act bill
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - Governor Henry McMaster and Lieutenant Governor Pamela S. Evette joined leaders and members of the General Assembly to sign the Religious Freedom Act.
The bill protects places of worship from government overreach and forced closure during states of emergency.
During the pandemic, churches in many areas of the United States had to close their doors.
“Throughout the pandemic liberal governors pilled on mandates and restrictions that infringed on the rights of their constituents – the most egregious of those mandates were the closure of churches, synagogues, and other places of worship,” said Governor Henry McMaster.
Under the new legislation, any places of worship not allowed to worship during declared emergencies can seek declaratory relief and compensatory damages for pecuniary and nonpecuniary losses.
“Religious liberty is one of the founding principles of our state and nation; this bill recognizes that important principle,” said S.C. State Representative John McCravy. “This bill ensures that our churches can stay open during the most difficult times when we need church the most.”
The bill passed the Senate 39-2 and passed the House 102-9.
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