Justices decline to hear appeal from Michigan faith-based program

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

The Supreme Court has declined to get involved in a dispute between Michigan officials and a faith-based program for troubled youths.

The Michigan Family Independence Agency imposed a moratorium on Teen Ranch in Sanilac County's Marlette from participating in a government-financed program for abused, neglected and delinquent children. It says the ranch coerced the teens into religious activities.

Teen Ranch says it offers alternatives such as study time, writing letters home and recreation.

Teen Ranch's lawyers say the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati incorrectly expanded a 2003 Supreme Court ruling to cover Teen Ranch. In the four-year-old ruling, the Supreme Court barred state scholarships for students studying to enter the clergy.

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