Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio has dropped its student health insurance plan rather than comply with new guidelines due to come into force this year. As part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, all providers of insurance will be obliged to provide “women’s health services” which includes free contraception and the morning after pill which prevents pregnancy within days of potential conception by causing immediate menstruation. The Catholic Church is opposed to such methods of contraception as they believe, as Python said, that “every sperm is sacred” although they have yet to articulate their beliefs with such brevity. Ribbing aside, the Franciscan University are sticking to their beliefs rather admirably by dropping their health insurance plan rather than comply with practices they see as contributing to murder. An announcement on their website read:
“The Obama Administration has mandated that all health insurance plans must cover ‘women’s health services’ including contraception, sterilization, and abortion-causing medications as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)… Up to this time, Franciscan University has specifically excluded these services and products from its student health insurance policy, and we will not participate in a plan that requires us to violate the consistent teachings of the Catholic Church on the sacredness of human life.”"
The University regrets that 3000 students are now without healthcare and blame the reforms for not including a suitable exemption for catholic colleges. The Government apparently have included an exemption but it does not guarantee that money paid into the fund would not be used to fund contraceptive services.
While the integrity of the Fransciscan University is to be applauded, it is difficult to make an intellectual connection between seaman caught in a condom and a murdered fetus but, at the end of the day, I’m not here to judge another’s belief. Perhaps the Government should have made sure catholic institutions were completely happy before writing up this bill and forcing thousands of colleges students to go without health care.