Church leaders called for legislation across the United States that protects vital religious freedoms during a press conference on Jan. 27 in the Conference Center in downtown Salt Lake City.
Key points from the Church's announcement include:
1. The Church will support legislation where it is being sought to provide protections in housing, employment and some other areas where LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) people do not have protections, while ensuring that religious freedom is not compromised.
2. The Church believes that a “fairness for all” approach, which strives to balance reasonable safeguards for LGBT people while protecting key religious rights, is the best way to overcome the sharp divisions and present cultural divide in our nation.
3. The Church is alarmed at the erosion of religious freedom. When religious people are publicly intimidated, retaliated against, forced from employment or made to suffer personal loss because they have raised their voice in the public square, donated to a cause or participated in an election, our democracy is the loser. This is just as wrong as persecution or retaliation against LGBT people.
4. This appeal for a balanced approach between religious and gay rights does not represent a change or shift in doctrine for the Church. It does represent a desire to bring people together, to encourage mutually respectful dialogue in what has become a highly polarized national debate.
5. In this approach, neither side may get all that they want. We must all learn to live with others who do not share the same beliefs or values.