A Roman Catholic diocese on Long Island has issued a warning to its three high schools that students and spectators cannot kneel or otherwise protest when the national anthem is played before games and other school events.
The Diocese of Rockville Centre sent out the directive this week. The diocese says it has a long-standing policy against protests during the anthem.
"We ask our students also to recognize that failure to abide by this policy may result in serious disciplinary action," the diocese said in a statement.
Spokesman Sean Dolan says violators would be disciplined on a case-by-case basis.
The reminder comes amid the national debate over NFL players kneeling during the national anthem to protest police killings of unarmed black people and other racial and social injustices.
President Donald Trump says the protesters are disrespectful and has called for them to be fired.