Department Report

Fast Facts

The NRLA works within legislative, civil, academic and other public arenas on behalf of the church and all people and institutions of faith.

Since 2006, the NRLA has mediated in behalf of 919 individuals in the workplace and other public venues.

The NRLA is the only professionally-functioning state government relations program in the North American Division.

Summary

The North Pacific Union Conference continues to champion the principles of religious liberty in the public arena as a ministry to all people of faith and for its members. The Northwest Religious Liberty Association provides professional legislative advocacy services, as well as legal guidance, mediation, representation and referral services in the workplace, home, schools, prisons and military. It provides noncombatancy letters connected to immigration and naturalization applications.

Mission

To champion the constitutional guarantee of religious freedom on behalf of Christ and all people of faith in its government relations and mediation services.

What's Been Accomplished

Legislative Affairs — Supported two successful legislative efforts on religious freedom in Oregon, helped defeat the unionization of faith-based child care centers in Washington State and helped pass Idaho's Freedom of Conscience Bill for health-care workers.

Public contacts — Developed substantial contacts throughout the Northwest with state and federal lawmakers, as well as interfaith leaders, through our team of capitol pastors.

Public Awareness — Participated in civic, academic and interfaith events in the Northwest, Washington, D.C., and internationally.

Educational Activities — Provided sermons and seminars for churches and public events, including a national attorneys' convention.

Workplace Mediation — Consulted 167 individuals in 2010 alone.

Internet Service — Provided a professional online resource center for pastors, members and the general public at nrla.com.

The Challenges Ahead

Strategic Vision — As religious discrimination for people of faith rises, we will strive to balance the increasing demand with legislative remedies and public awareness efforts.

Facebook Network — We plan to use Facebook, and develop an online mentoring and training network program to share religious freedom concerns.

September 01, 2011 / Feature