Originally Sent: 5/7/2014
|From the HSLDA e-lert service|
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Stop Fairfax Homeschool
Senior Counsel Scott Woodruff answers questions and assists members with legal issues in your state. He and his wife homeschooled their children.
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Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:
An ordinance that could wipe out some homeschool co-ops in Fairfax County, VA, is moving forward. We need your help to stop it!
The proposed ordinance criminalizes having more than 49 people in your home on a weekly basis. For example, the ordinance would outlaw a cooperative that has a morning session and a separate afternoon session one day a week, each with 13 kids and 13 parents.
This ordinance threatens to criminalize your right to use your own property in an orderly, neighborly manner. Please act today to prevent the county government from crushing successful home-based co-ops.
Action Requested if You Live in Fairfax County
1. Please call the member of the Board of Supervisors who represents you. Your message can be as simple as: “Please vote NO on the proposed group assembly ordinance. It outlaws many normal home uses that don’t bother anyone.”
2. Please attend one of the public hearings that start tonight and speak out against the ordinance. Here are the details:
• Wednesday, May 7, 2014 from 7 to 9 p.m. at South County Government Center, 8350 Richmond Highway, Alexandria, VA 22309, in the Main Conference Room (SCC221)
• Monday, May 12, 2014 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035 in the Board Auditorium
• Monday, May 19, 2014 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Lemon Road Elementary School, 7230 Idylwood Road, Falls Church, VA 22043 in the school cafeteria
3. This ordinance would also outlaw well-attended home churches. Please pass this message on to non-homeschool families who would be hurt by the enactment of the ordinance.
To find contact information for the county supervisor who represents you, click here.
To read the text of the proposed ordinance, click here. It prohibits gatherings of more than 49 people more than 3 times in 40 days.
For the county staff’s explanation of why they think the ordinance is needed, click here.
Hebrews 10:25 commands Christians to “not forsake” the gathering of themselves together. The proposed ordinance seems carefully crafted to exert heavy-handed government control over predominantly Christian weekly activities like home churches and homeschool co-ops. Even robust weekly small groups (cell groups, home groups) could be outlawed.
A family of 10 would be painted as law breakers if they have 40 guests once a week. But is this really more of a problem than a single adult having 48 guests in his home every day of the week—as is clearly permitted under the proposal?
If there is a problem with large group gatherings causing parking problems, that can be solved with a simple parking ordinance. If a large gathering causes a noise problem, Fairfax already has a noise ordinance. But the outlawing of regular groups of a certain size just for the blind sake of banning groups of a certain size is irrational and discriminatory.
If there is actually a problem, this kind of “shotgun blast” is the wrong answer. A “laser” solution might be more effective as well as more respectful of the rights of property owners.
Thank you for standing with us for freedom!
HSLDA Senior Counsel
P.S. We greatly value you and your support—it is a privilege to serve you! If you or someone you know is not a member of HSLDA, will you consider taking a moment today to join or recommend us? Your support enables us to defend individual families threatened by government officials and protect homeschooling freedom for all. Join now >>
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