ORTHODOX UNION PRAISES SETTLEMENT OF BIKUR CHOLIM LAWSUIT; OU WEIGHED IN WITH AMICUS BRIEF SUPPORTING RELIGIOUS GROUP’S RIGHT TO A ZONING VARIANCE
Today, the Orthodox Union (Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America), the nation's largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, praised a settlement of two concurrent lawsuits against the Village of Suffern, in Rockland County, NY for denying a zoning variance to "Shabbos House" of Bikur Cholim of Rockland. The OU had filed an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief through attorney Nathan Lewin and the National Jewish Commission on Law & Public Affairs in support of Bikur Cholim and alleging that Suffern had violated the Religious Land Use & Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) in denying the variance.
Nathan J. Diament, OU Director of Public Policy stated:
“Federal law -- and the U.S. Constitution -- are equally clear that accommodation of sincerely held religious beliefs isn't just a nice thing to do, it’s the law. We are pleased that Suffern saw fit to settle these two religious liberty lawsuits and to allow Orthodox Jews and others the accommodation they need to visit loved ones over the Sabbath and holidays.”