This is outrageous.
The Obama Administration is mandating that religious groups and church-related institutions will have to provide free contraception, sterilizations, and abortifacient pills to their employees.
After being deluged with complaints from outraged religious groups, Obama’s health department has dug in its heels, saying its decision to force employers to provide abortifacient birth control drugs will continue as planned - although faith-based groups will be given a year reprieve. In response, U.S. Catholic bishops have not minced words, vowing to fight the order as “literally unconscionable.”
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced Friday that faith-based entities like hospitals and universities will have until August 1, 2013 to provide employees with free birth control as part of their insurance packages. The mandate will also force such groups to pay for sterilizations and, because the FDA has approved abortifacient drugs such as Ella as “contraception.”
The mandate is being implemented as part of the new health care legislation that was passed in March 2010 despite vigorous opposition from U.S. Catholic bishops, who called it dangerously open to being used as a means of spreading abortion.
NARAL Pro-Choice America, the nation’s top abortion lobby, immediately celebrated the announcement and called on abortion supporters to thank the administration for defeating “a pressure campaign from anti-contraception groups.”
“With your help, we stood up to the large, well-funded groups that tried to put their anti-contraception beliefs ahead of women’s health,” NARAL president Nancy Keenan told supporters in an email. “We also kept the pressure on the Obama administration, and, clearly, our message was heard.”
But Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic bishops, indicated that the Catholic Church would not go down without a fight.
“In effect, the president is saying we have a year to figure out how to violate our consciences,” said Dolan.
“To force American citizens to choose between violating their consciences and forgoing their healthcare is literally unconscionable,” he continued. “It is as much an attack on access to health care as on religious freedom. Historically this represents a challenge and a compromise of our religious liberty”...Continued