Several pro-life museum visitors that were kicked out of the National Archives after wearing pro-life apparel will receive a personal tour and an apology in an agreement reached between the two parties Tuesday, according to court documents.
A group of pro-life parents and students, who had just attended the annual March For Life in Washington, D.C. in January, were forced to leave the Archives after staff told them to take off any religious or pro-life paraphernalia; they later sued the Archives, arguing that their First Amendment rights had been violated. Two of the visitors, Wendilee Lassiter and a 17-year-old high school student, whose name was redacted, and the Archives reached an agreement Tuesday that included an apology from staff and a personal tour according to court documents.
The agreement noted that the pro-life plaintiffs were “subject to a pattern of ongoing misconduct” that “intentionally chilled their religious speech and expression” by being forced to cover their pro-life clothing or leave. The Archives stated that it “regrets” the incident and disclosed that it must also inform staff and security personnel that visitors have the right to “wear t-shirts, hats, buttons, etc., that display protest language, including religious and political speech.”
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The Archives had previously issued a public apology after the pro-life museum visitors filed a lawsuit with the American Center for Law and Justice.
“Earlier this week, a lawsuit was filed against the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) stating that on the morning of January 20, 2023, the day of the March for Life, several visitors to our museum in Washington, D.C., were told by NARA security officers “to remove or cover their attire because of their pro-life messages,” the Archives’ press release read. “As the home to the original Constitution and Bill of Rights, which enshrine the rights of free speech and religion, we sincerely apologize for this occurrence.”
The ACLJ told the Daily Caller News Foundation that it “does not comment on pending orders.”
The National Archives did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.
LifeNews Note: Kate Anderson writes for Daily Caller. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience.