Sunday Laws

Sunday Closing Laws (1962)

The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of compulsory Sunday Observance laws. As law-abiding citizens, National Women’s League accepts this ruling as the law of the land. Nevertheless, we continue to oppose Sunday laws in the conviction that they violate the principle of religious liberty by imposing sanctions on those who, in the words of Mr. Justice Douglas, “unlike the Christian majority that make up our society, worship on a different day or do not share the religious scruples of the majority.”

Where Sunday Closing laws exist, National Women’s League urges that they be amended to exempt those persons whose religious convictions compel them to observe a day other than Sunday as a religious day of rest.

Sunday Laws (1960)

We believe that compulsory Sunday Observance Laws violate the principle of religious liberty since they involve use of State powers to compel persons to conform to or refrain from practices that find their basic sanction in particular religious beliefs and teachings.

Therefore we oppose the enactment or expansion of compulsory Sunday Observance Laws and urge that at the very least, such laws should exempt persons whose religious convictions compel them to observe a day other than Sunday as a religious day of reset.

The decision in the two cases now before the U.S. Supreme Court testing the constitutionality of Sunday Observance Laws will have a far reaching effect in eliminating Sunday Observance Laws in every state of the union.

Sunday Laws (1958)

We believe that compulsory Sunday Observance Laws violate the principle of religious liberty since they involve use of state powers to compel persons to conform to or refrain from practices that find their basic sanction in particular religious beliefs and teachings. Therefore we oppose the enactment or expansion of compulsory Sunday Observance Laws and urge that at the very least, such laws should exempt persons whose religious convictions compel them to observe a day other than Sunday as a religious day of rest.

National Women’s League recognizing the explosive nature of the above and related issues in the area of church-state relations and religious liberty and varying local circumstances, urges its affiliated Sisterhoods to explore fully these problems by a program of study. Action by individuals should be avoided.

We urge Sisterhood Social Action Committees to work on such matters with other Jewish groups in the community through the Jewish Community Council and to consult the Social Action Committee of National Women’s League for literature and guidance.