Ark Encounter Christian theme park will only hire Christians

A concept art of The Ark Encounter, a full-scale Noah's Ark tourist attraction expected to open in July 2016 in Williamstown, Kentucky.(Wikipedia)

There will be up to 400 jobs going when the 510-foot long Ark Encounter attraction opens its doors to the public on July 7, but there's one catch for job hunters – applicants should be Christian before they are considered for the post.

According to Ken Ham, founder of the Answers in Genesis ministry, operator of the Christian theme park, applicants will be required to sign a statement saying they're Christian and "profess Christ as their saviour" before they can be considered for a post.

"We are a religious group and we make no apology about that, and (federal law) allows us that. We're requiring them to be Christians, that's the bottom line," Ham said to WLWT News

Ham cited the January federal court ruling by U.S. District Judge Greg Van Tatenhove that allows the group to impose a religious requirement for its employees under an exemption on the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

Ham however clarified that they will not be discriminating among different denominations of Christianity in recruiting their staff.

"There are Christians in all sorts of different denominations. So as long as they sign that, it doesn't specify in there whether you're Protestant or Catholic or Baptist or Presbyterian or whatever," he said.

Among the positions that will open for Ark Encounter are food servers, park ride operators, ticketing and other park related positions.

Earlier this year, the court ruled in favor of Answers in Genesis in seeking to avail of a tax tourism incentive worth $18 million, which the state of Kentucky had previously withdrawn because the park was being presented as an extension of Answers in Genesis' ministry, and therefore a means to advance religion, Bigstory reported.

The incentive grants major tourism attractions built in Kentucky a chance to recover 25 per cent of their development costs through tax rebates.