The NCBC supports the state of Iowa and the Ruling of its Board of Medicine to protect women from abortions via telemedicine. Planned Parenthood has challenge these safety requirements and the case is before the Iowa Supreme Court. Dr. Marie Hilliard, is Director of Bioethics and Public Policy for The National Catholic Bioethics Center, where she files briefs such as the brief for Iowa (NCBC named on page 4) and she helps the Center fulfill its critical role in defending the human person and supporting the common good.
(For more details on this issue, see: http://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/news/health/2014/09/16/planned-parenthood-of-the-heartland-iowa-supreme-court-telemedicine-abortion/15726317/.)
The NCBC has also firmly supported the Little Sisters of the Poor in their Fight for Religious Freedom, which is being Violated by the HHS Contraceptive Mandate. On Monday December 8th, 2014, the Little Sisters of the Poor will have their day in court before the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through its Contraceptive Mandate, is requiring virtually all employers, regardless of their opposition on grounds of conscience, to provide to their employees through their benefit plans coverage of contraceptive drugs and devices, including abortifacients, as well as surgical sterilizations. The Little Sisters present perhaps the best and clearest example of a religious organization that is faced with an existential threat by the HHS Contraceptive Mandate
A victory by the Little Sisters will send a clear message to the U.S. Supreme Court, and will increase the chances that other religious non-profits will be protected from the ruinous fines that would be imposed under the Mandate. A defeat could subject the Little Sisters to as much as $50 million in fines for following their conscience -- that would force them out of their significant ministry to the elderly and infirm, and also send an ominous message about the future of religious freedom in America. Please continue to hold the Little Sisters and their attorneys in your prayers.
The National Catholic Bioethics Center (NCBC) continues to support organizations and their rights to religious freedom which are continuously violated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Contraceptive Mandate. The NCBC joins other organizations committed to the protection of Religious Freedom in signing onto the following amicus briefs, in support of those employers who are legally challenging the violations of their conscience rights:
- Dordt College and Cornerstone University (UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE EIGHTH CIRCUIT, DORDT COLLEGE and CORNERSTONE UNIVERSITY, v. SYLVIA M. BURWELL)
- The Archdiocese of St. Louis (UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE EIGHTH CIRCUIT, ARCHDIOCESE OF ST. LOUIS and CATHOLIC CHARITIES OF ST. LOUIS. v. SYLVIA M. BURWELL)
- East Texas Baptist University and Westminster Theological Seminary (UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE FIFTH CIRCUIT EAST TEXAS BAPTIST UNIVERSITY; HOUSTON BAPTIST UNIVERSITY, WESTMINSTER THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY, v. SYLVIA MATTHEWS BURWELL).