Coalitions of Religious Groups Opposing Contraception Say Mandate Threatens Religious Freedom

contraception-mandate-280Major religious groups continued their strong opposition to the requirement that employers provide free contraception insurance coverage under the new health care law. The administration has made changes to the policy to try to accommodate religious objections, but a broad coalition, including members of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Southern Baptist Convention, say the policy still violates religious freedom.

Archbishop William Lori (Archdiocese of Baltimore): “We want people of belief and of conscience to be able to run their businesses and their daily activities according to Christian principles, should they choose to do so.”

Meanwhile, several businesses that also have moral objections have sued the administration over the mandate. An appeals court recently ruled the owners of the arts-and-crafts store chain Hobby Lobby will not have to pay penalties for not complying with the mandate while they challenge the policy in court. Those fines might have been as high as $1.3 million a day.