Faith and Action’s partner organization Priests for Life, led by Father Frank Pavone, filed the federal lawsuit Priests for Life v. Sebelius in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York (Brooklyn), on February 15, 2012.
It names Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius because she issued President Obama’s order mandating houses of worship to pay for abortion pills, among other unethical and deadly procedures. Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, often called Obamacare, HHS secretaries are entitled to issue unconstitutional mandates and ration or deny health care to Americans.
As Faith and Action explained, after hundreds of religious leaders, faith-based and pro-life organizations publicly refused to comply with the mandate, President Obama announced an “accommodation” exempting houses of worship. Now he requires all health insurance companies to provide so-called ‘contraception’ “free of change.” This “accommodation” exempts no one and the number of religious leaders protesting it has grown to thousands.
The Priests for Life lawsuit is the first to be launched subsequent to the announcement of the “accommodations” and addresses policy as it currently stands.
Thus, Priests for Life said, “One part of their lawsuit seeks injunctive relief from the ‘forced speech’ aspect of the controversial Health and Human Services ruling. According to the HHS regulations, virtually all U.S. employers will not only be forced to pay for 100% of an employee’s prescription for abortion-causing drugs, but also be forced to instruct the employee on how to obtain these morally-objectionable prescriptions and get them for free.”
Priests for Life is headquartered in Staten Island, New York and has a Washington office in the headquarters of Father Paul Schenck’s National Pro-Life Center on Capitol Hill.
WND covered the lawsuits by Priests for Life and EWTN, the global Catholic media network, noting that the Obama mandates violate universal human rights.
As Faith and Action further reported, many members of Congress reject the Obama mandates and seek to pass remedial bills until the Affordable Health Care for America Act can be completely repealed.
On Ash Wednesday, a “State of Emergency” declaration from Faith and Action’s Rev. Rob Schenck will be delivered to President Obama.
Faith and Action also is lodging formal complaints; working with members of Congress to “check” the executive branch; and signing-on to lawsuits to block these actions. Likewise, we’ll continue to mobilize religious leaders to speak out, pray and resist these unconstitutional violations of the First Amendment and other human rights.