August 31, 2021
On August 23, 2021, Weil secured a confidential settlement on behalf of observant Jewish residents of The Colony in Fort Lee, N.J. under which The Colony has restored its Sabbath elevator program. The observant Jewish residents – whom Weil represented on a pro bono basis – are religiously prohibited on the Sabbath and certain Jewish holidays from operating electronic and certain mechanical devices, including elevators. Elevators running in “Sabbath mode” run continuously for a set period of time and stop on certain designated floors to eliminate the need for pressing elevator buttons. The Sabbath elevator program allows Weil’s clients to observe their faith with dignity during the Sabbath and Jewish holidays by attending religious services and engaging with their community. Many observant Jewish residents of the Colony are also elderly, physically disabled, and cannot use the stairs, making resumed use of the Sabbath mode all the more important.
This is the latest of several religious liberty settlements secured by Weil litigators in similar high-profile discrimination lawsuits – all on a pro bono basis.
The Weil team was led by partner Yehudah L. Buchweitz, and included counsel David Yolkut and Matthew R. Friedenberg, and associates Josh Halpern, Benjamin Ritholtz, Yonatan Shefa, Tzvi Novak, Samantha Smith and Blake Steinberg.