In 1992, Kathleen Pielech and Patricia Reed were fired from Raynham-Taunton Greyhound Park for absenting themselves on Christmas Day. In an amicus brief two years ago, the Catholic League argued that Pielech and Reed had their First Amendment right to religious freedom abridged by this action. The ACLU provided lead counsel to the two women.
This past August, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts struck down a law as constitutional that sought to give protection to people like Pielech and Reed. But now Governor William Weld and key state representatives have pursued a new law that would provide rights to person’s of faith on the job. The bill was passed easily in the State House and now awaits passage in the Senate.
The Catholic League has contacted Gov. Weld, Lt. Gov. Paul Celluci, House Speaker Thomas Finneran, Attorney General Scott Harshbarger and Senate President Thomas Birmingham pledging its support. Gov. Weld wrote to Dr. Donohue thanking him for his support. A decision in the Senate is expected in January.