NASW Supports HHS Decision on Women’s Rights

Recently, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) ruled that contraceptive services must be covered by most forms of insurance without a co-pay or deductible.  Houses of worship are not required to provide birth control in their health coverage. The Obama administration declined the bishops push to exempt religiously affiliated organizations whose primary mission isn’t worship.

Now, the Catholic Church has stepped up their efforts in opposition to the ruling.  Newt Gingrich, Republican candidate for President, has also strongly condemned this decision.   Across the country, Catholic bishops are urging their parishioners to stand up against the Administration’s directive.

NASW strongly supports the ruling issued by HHS, and supports the right of women to obtain contraceptive services without hindrance from the religious beliefs of their employer or academic institution.  We proudly stand behind the right of women everywhere to act in the best interests of their health, their families, and their rights.


  1. I think we have forgotten that women can go and get contraceptives in any CVS, Walgreens or grocery store. I do not think that it is fair or just to disrespect any religious organization (and that includes other faiths who do not believe in contraceptive, abortion or sterilization practices)and their belief system. Social workers are to respect the differences in religions. That Catholic institutions do not want to support these practices which are contrary to their belief I think should be respected. By the way women in the Catholic Church are not being oppressed. There are many strong Catholic women who oppose abortion, contraception and sterilization. Such organizations like the Susan B. Anthony group (named for her strong disapproval of these practices). Also, no government has the right to step into the dominion of faith and regulate/legislate what a particular denomination finds morally reprehensible. Also, lets be real, free services are payed -nothing is for free (if this is the case-why not offer free prescription glasses, free medical food for those who absolutely need it to prevent further serious illness-but cannot get it covered even through the state or federal government!!)
    Please think this issue through before making it a women’s rights issue because clearly it is politicized and it is a matter of freedom of the “exercise of religion and thereof”…(1st Amendment)
    Thank you,

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