Banners On City Light Poles: Upholding Religious Freedom
In 2009, Jesus Is Alive! banners appeared on city-owned light poles in downtown Colorado Springs. The use of public property to promote a religious belief struck many in our community – including Citizens Project – as a government endorsement of religion that could disenfranchise citizens whose religious beliefs did not align with the banners’ message.
Citizens Project contacted the city of Colorado Springs to find out whether city code ensured that separation of church and state was upheld on municipal property, including light poles. As it turned out, there were no such policies in place, and CP offered to be part of the solution: to work collaboratively with the city, faith communities, and individuals to ensure that everyone’s religious freedom was protected.
In mid-January 2010, Citizens Project submitted a proposal to the city, inviting them to enact policies that were inclusive of everyone, irrespective of their faith. This is a draft for discussion purposes only, and we are working toward respectful, inclusive dialogue with all community stakeholders. Until a mutually satisfying conclusion is reached, CP will continue to participate in the formation of the new policies and – most importantly – respectful dialogue about the nature of our first amendment rights.
Please visit this page for updates related to the light poles, or check out our most recent blog posts for more information.