January 8, 2010

Health Care Reform Update and Action

During October and November, diocesan and parish leaders were asked by the U.S. Bishops' Conference to distribute two consecutive Nationwide Bulletin Inserts on health care reform.  Since that time the following has occurred:
  • The U.S. House passed health care reform that reaffirms the essential, longstanding and widely supported policy against using federal funds for elective abortion coverage.
  • The U.S. Senate has rejected this policy and passed health care reform that requires federal funds to help subsidize and promote health plans that cover elective abortions. All purchasers of such plans will be required to pay for other people's abortions through a separate payment solely to pay for abortion.
These two bills are being combined into one bill that both the House and Senate will vote on in final form.  Provisions against abortion funding and in favor of conscience protection, affordability, and immigrants' access to health care must be part of a fair and just health care reform bill. Unless and until these criteria are met, the final bill must be opposed.

The U.S. bishops have asked that an updated Nationwide Bulletin Insert (Spanish) on health care reform be printed or hand-stuffed in every parish bulletin and/or distributed in pews or at church entrances as soon as possible. Pulpit announcements and prayer petitions have also been made available (in English and Spanish) as final House and Senate votes may take place soon.  

Catholics need to make their voices heard insisting that health care reform protect the lives, dignity, consciences and health of all. If you've yet to do so, please take a brief moment to send a message to your local Congressperson and two U.S. Senators through the Catholic Legislative Advocacy Network below.  If you prefer to call rather than email, the Capitol switchboard number is (202) 224.3121. 

Thank you for your continued support of health care reform that protects and upholds the sanctity of human life!

- Michigan Catholic Conference

PS Click here to follow the MCC on Twitter, where updates regarding health care reform and other critical legislative issues are provided.

No comments: