(RoyalPatriot.com )- Former Postal employee Gerald E. Groff of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, is an evangelical Christian and strict adherent of the Sunday Sabbath. Groff joined the US Postal Service in 2011, a year before the agency started subcontracting Amazon’s package delivery services. The contract said Postal employees must work Sunday hours to facilitate delivery on certain days.
A collective bargaining agreement meant that Groff, like other Postal employees, had to work certain Sundays. However, Groff sought a transfer to a different post office branch that did not participate in Sunday deliveries since the shifts interfered with his religious practice. Deliveries on Sundays were later added at that location, too.
Groff’s boss first let him arrange Sunday coverage independently, and he did it successfully. On the other hand, Groff was inconsistent and failed to show up for more than two dozen Sunday shifts.
Groff knew he was going to be fired in 2019, so he sent in his resignation. Soon after, Groff filed a federal lawsuit alleging that the Postal Service had discriminated against him based on his religion because they had not made reasonable accommodations for his religious observance.
The district court issued a judgment in favor of USPS on a motion for summary judgment. According to President Obama’s appointed U.S. District Judge Jeffrey L. Schmehl, Sunday delivery is essential to the Postal Service’s business, and Groff was treated no differently than any other employee.
Groff filed a petition for review with the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. Patty Schwartz, a U.S. Circuit Judge appointed by Obama, wrote the judgment in which the court of appeals again ruled in USPS’s favor.
It was asserted by Groff’s legal team that no American should have to choose between their faith and their work.
The Supreme Court will hear Mr. Groff’s case on April 18, but his attorneys have already submitted a brief explaining their views.
The Supreme Court has said that the Groff case will determine whether or not he has legal standing under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which forbids discrimination in employment based on religion.
The conflict between religious practice and paid employment is the most pressing issue in religious freedom in the United States today.