Michigan: Tell Your State Senator to Keep Religion out of Your Health Care!
May 1, 2013
The Michigan Senate is expected to vote soon on a bill that would allow employers and health insurance providers to opt out of providing any type of medical service based on religious or moral objections. The Center for Inquiry (CFI) opposes this measure and urges Michigan residents to contact their state representatives and voice opposition to this measure.
CFI fully supports the free exercise of religion, and much of our work is dedicated to protecting freedom of conscience for religious believers and nonbelievers alike. However, Senate Bill 136 (PDF) does not protect freedom of religion; it allows for the imposition of religion on others.
If approved, SB 136 would put the citizens of Michigan at risk of not having access to a range of critical medical services. Consider just a few examples:
- Employers could deny women coverage for birth control and other preventative care;
- Health insurers could deny coverage to family members who seek to remove a loved one from life support;
- Doctors could refuse to inform a woman about her fetus’ severe defects out of fear she will have an abortion;
- And university guidance counselors could refuse to counsel a suicidal LGBT student.
As the Center for Inquiry recently argued to the federal Department of Health and Human Services, people should not be deprived of health care coverage simply because of their employers’ religiously motivated objections. People should have full control over their health care decisions and ought to be able to freely exercise their rights without interference from their particular employers.
The Michigan Senate could vote on SB 136 as early as this week. Please contact your state senator and tell him or her to oppose this bill and prevent employers and health insurers from dictating the health care decisions of Michigan citizens!Take action now!