NY Archdiocese Covers Workers' Birth Control

...Despite Cardinal Timothy Dolan's fight against Obama rule

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted May 27, 2013 10:23 AM CDT

(Newser) – The country's top Catholic bishop hasn't taken kindly to ObamaCare's call for employers to fund birth control—but his own archdiocese has been paying for the coverage for years, the New York Times reports. For more than a decade, the Archdiocese of New York, headed by Cardinal Timothy Dolan, has indirectly paid for union-driven health coverage that includes both birth control and abortion for some 3,000 of its health workers. But "we provide the services under protest," says a rep for the archdiocese.

The coverage is tied to ArchCare workers' membership in 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East. The employees' health benefits match those at more than 100 other New York-area hospitals, the Times notes, and ArchCare doesn't pay for the plan directly; instead, it contributes to a union fund that covers the benefits. When the archdiocese began paying for the coverage, there was some concern, says the head of a health employers' group. But Dolan finally decided "there was no other option if the Catholic Church was to continue to provide health care to these union-affiliated employees in the city of New York," says the archdiocese rep.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Catholic archbishop for New York, gives a blessing in New York, Wednesday, May 8, 2013.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Catholic archbishop for New York, gives a blessing in New York, Wednesday, May 8, 2013.   (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
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