ATHENS, Ga. — Attorneys with the Christian Legal Society and Alliance Defense Fund filed suit today in federal court against the University of Georgia on behalf of a Christian fraternity, Beta Upsilon Chi (BYX). University officials refuse to recognize BYX as a registered student group because the group requires its members and officers to share the group’s Christian beliefs.
“Christian student groups cannot be singled out for discrimination. The right of association applies to all student groups on a public university campus,” said Timothy J. Tracey, litigation counsel for CLS’s Center for Law & Religious Freedom. “The University of Georgia deprives Christian student groups of this right when they force them to open their membership and leadership to students who disagree with their Christian beliefs.”
BYX, or Brothers Under Christ, is a fraternity of Christian male college students who wish to foster fellowship through their common belief in Jesus Christ. The university denied the fraternity recognition in November, claiming the group’s requirements that officials and members profess faith in Christ is “religious discrimination.”
“The university allows the Young Democrats to require its officers and members to be Democrats,” said Tracey. “Why is it then that the university is telling Christian groups they cannot require their officers and members to be Christians?”
Without official recognition, BYX is denied important benefits provided other student groups, such as access to meeting space and ability to advertise on campus. ADF and CLS attorneys are seeking a court ruling declaring the university’s policy unconstitutional and prohibiting officials from denying recognition to BYX.
The complaint filed in Beta Upsilon Chi v. Adams in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, Athens Division, can be viewed here.
Together, ADF, America’s largest legal alliance, and CLS, America’s premier network of Christian legal professionals, defend religious liberty, human life, marriage, and the family.