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UNITED STATES 1 Aug 2013 Controversial contraceptive mandate in effect
The national mandate requiring contraceptive coverage in health-care programs comes into effect on Aug 1 despite a rash of lawsui

August 1, 2013 - NULL

UNITED STATES 1 Aug 2013 Controversial contraceptive mandate in effect
The national mandate requiring contraceptive coverage in health-care programs comes into effect on Aug 1 despite a rash of lawsuits seeking to block its implementation. Legal challenges from the Catholic hierarchy and other religious entities against the mandate climbed to 60 in Apr 2013 and the issue is expected to end in the United States Supreme Court. The mandate is part of the Affordable Care Act of the Barak Obama administration.

Some one half of the challenges are from nonprofit organizations, according to the Huffington Post. The mandate requires

UNITED STATES 1 Aug 2013 Controversial contraceptive mandate in effect
The national mandate requiring contraceptive coverage in health-care programs comes into effect on Aug 1 despite a rash of lawsuits seeking to block its implementation. Legal challenges from the Catholic hierarchy and other religious entities against the mandate climbed to 60 in Apr 2013 and the issue is expected to end in the United States Supreme Court. The mandate is part of the Affordable Care Act of the Barak Obama administration.

Some one half of the challenges are from nonprofit organizations, according to the Huffington Post. The mandate requires third-party insurance companies to provide contraception coverage to the nonprofits' employees if they decide not to do so. According to the rules of the Affordable Care Act, religiously-affiliated nonprofit organizations, such as schools and hospitals, can opt out of paying for contraception coverage for their employees by instructing the third-party insurer to absorb the cost of the coverage and provide it directly to women.

For-profit companies are not exempt from covering contraception and face large fines if they refuse to do so. So far, 21 companies have petitioned for preliminary injunctions against the mandate to avoid the fines, according to the Huffington Post. Of those cases, 16 have been granted injunctions and five have been denied.

One opponent argues in court that the religious exemption is too narrow because it excludes people like the Christian owners of Hobby Lobby, who morally object to contraception and have sued. Reproductive rights groups, including the National Women's Law Center, contend that religious freedom should be interpreted to allow women to decide for themselves whether to take contraception, rather than to allow their employers to decide for them. (WRITTEN APR 13)

TAGS: contraceptive mandate, Cahtolic Church, Catholics, lawsuits, controversy, legal challenges, United States Supreme Court, Affordable Care Act, Barak Obama administration, religiously-affiliated nonprofit organizations, for-profit companies, Hobby Lobby, United States, Americas, August 2013, Catholic news, religion news, religious news

RELATED READING:

Contraception Mandate Likely Headed To Supreme Court, Experts Say (Huff/Post 3 Apr 2013)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/05/contraception-mandate-supreme-court_n_3017451.html

Contraceptive mandate goes into full effect Aug 1, Sebelius says (CWN 9 Apr 2013)

http://www.catholicculture.org/news/headlines/index.cfm?storyid=17541

Date written/update: 2013-08-01