National

Feb 7, 2013 3:19 PM by Patricia Collier

Bishops press for broader birth control exemption

The nation's Roman Catholic bishops say the Obama administration's compromise plan for religious employers and birth control coverage doesn't go far enough.
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said Thursday it wants a bigger buffer between religious charities and any third party arranging contraceptive coverage. The bishops also want a clearer statement that faith-affiliated hospitals and other nonprofits are religious ministries.
Church leaders made the comments a week after the Health and Human Services Department announced its latest revised plan for contraceptive coverage, part of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. Religious groups have been pressing for a year for a wider exemption.
The rule is the target of dozens of lawsuits by religious groups and owners of for-profit businesses who say the rule violates their religious beliefs.

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