Statement of Kristen Day on Hobby Lobby Decision

     “We applaud the decision by the Supreme Court to allow family-owned companies with religious objections to not include contraceptives that can cause abortion in their health insurance plans.  The narrow decision by the court protects the long-standing rights of those who object to paying for abortion. The decision also ensures that female employees will not be denied access to free contraception that does not cause abortion, since the Court notes that the government has a mechanism by which insurers pay for contraception. 

     The ruling applies immediately only to intrauterine devices and morning-after pills, since that is all that these companies opposed. But the ruling will also protect companies that have objections to other contraceptive methods. DFLA did not take a position on whether those religious objections should succeed. But we agree that the conscience rights of all deserve equal consideration in this context. 

     This decision does not undo the Obama administration's deeply erroneous decision to include abortion-causing drugs and devices in the contraceptive mandate in the first place. The religious-freedom law involved in the case only provides for exceptions from participating in the mandate. DFLA supports efforts to remove potential abortifacients from the mandate altogether. 

     We also praise Hobby Lobby for continuing to provide insurance coverage, to both female and male employees, for contraception methods that do not cause abortion.  In addition to covering 16 of 20 approved contraceptive methods by the Food and Drug Administration, Hobby Lobby goes further than the ACA by also covering vasectomies for their male employees.

     We support universal health care and actively worked to pass the Affordable Care Act. We are proud that so many individuals and families are receiving essential care, included coverage for pregnant women. We urge the President and the Congress to focus on affordable child-care, parental leave, a living wage and other opportunities to help and support working families.”

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