Professor Chris Sagers has signed an amicus brief submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court by a group of antitrust professors and scholars in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In this brief, the professors argue that the ministerial exception does not and should not be expanded to protect professional associations of clergy from antitrust scrutiny. They argue that a broadly or loosely defined ‘ministerial exception’ could allow clergy to form agreements that would otherwise be condemned under the Sherman Act. In particular, the group is concerned that certain professional organizations of clergy organize their labor markets through restraints that, absent First Amendment projections, would violate the Sherman Act, and that the ‘ministerial exception’ was not intended to facilitate or immunize such actions. They argue that the ministerial exception was intended to apply to hierarchical religious organizations to avoid government intrusion into matters regarding employment of their clergy. It was not intended to apply to all matters of employment, such as the employment rules imposed by professional associations and those imposed by independent congregations.
To read the brief, click here: