ACLU files suit against Rowan County for prayer at meetings

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File image: Rowan County commissioners praying at a public government meeting. (Photo courtesy, WSOC)

ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. — The ACLU and three individuals have filed a lawsuit calling for an injunction to prevent Rowan County Commissioners from praying before meetings.

According to WSOC, the ACLU claims the prayers violate constitutional rights and make some feel unwelcome.

Mike Meno, the communications director for the ACLU of North Carolina, tells WSOC that “it’s a very clear First Amendment issue.”

Meno says the ACLU has asked the county to stop before, but it hasn’t.

The lawsuit also lists three Rowan County residents who are “involved in the community,” WSOC reports.

The lawsuit cites a 2011 ruling that found Forsyth County’s holding of sectarian prayer unconstitutional.

The ACLU says that if government officials want to pray before meetings, the court ruling says prayer can’t be specific to one religion, WSOC reports.

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