On World Religious Freedom Day, Senator Keren Riquelme announced the introduction of a bill that would create “a law to guarantee the free exercise of the fundamental right to religious freedom to patients and residents of hospitals and institutions for the elderly, both public and public.” “As a private person.”
“This bill is based on indications made by the United States Supreme Court during the pandemic when it stated this Even in light of the pandemic, the Constitution cannot be put aside and forgotten (Even in light of the pandemic, the Constitution cannot be ignored and forgotten), remembering that the neutrality of the state with regard to religion is violated when some kind of measure or exception is allowed for secular reasons but prohibited for religious reasons. That is, if hospitals or elderly care institutions allow their professional staff to serve patients, they cannot deny them access to religious clergy.
According to the explanatory statement for this measure, during the Covid-19 pandemic, hospitals and institutions for the elderly, on the one hand, allowed the entry of employees whom they described as essential, if they adhered to safety and security measures. They excluded religious leaders who could have adhered to the same security measures and in this way were able to serve The faithful population who demanded their service.
“The reason for this arbitrary exclusion by hospitals and institutions designated for the elderly was not for reasons of safety and health but rather due to a misunderstanding of the scope of religious freedom in exceptional situations such as the pandemic. “In fact, there has been an international legal debate about the suppression of religious freedom in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic,” the senator said.
According to the senator, “This law therefore aims to ensure full respect for the religious freedom of citizens in times of emergency or in any other situation, when the citizen reasonably demands his right to exercise his faith experience.”
This is Senate Bill 1381, introduced on October 19 and co-authored by Senators Tomas Rivera Schatz, Migdalia Padilla, Nitza Moran, William Villafanez, Marisa Jiménez, Womda Soto, Juan Oscar Morales, Gregorio Matías, and Carmelo Ríos. , Albert Torres and Ramon Ruiz.
The United Nations General Assembly declared in 1981 that “everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion.” This right includes the freedom to manifest one’s religion or beliefs, individually or collectively, in public and private spaces, through worship, celebration, practice and education.
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