Ceasefire on Contraception?

Religious nonprofits challenging their participation in the contraceptive mandate under the Affordable Care Act filed a legal brief on April 12 that could end the standoff with the Obama administration. In the brief, objectors to the mandate agreed with a U.S. Supreme Court proposal that such coverage be provided through an alternative health care plan without involving the religious employers. The brief said that as long as any alternative plan offering contraceptive health coverage is “truly independent” of the petitioners and their health insurance plans, then they would no longer object to the A.C.A.’s goal of providing access to free birth control to women. Any such arrangement would require a separate insurance policy, a separate enrollment process, a separate insurance card and a separate payment source and be offered to employees through a separate communication, thus protecting the petitioners’ objections under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act to the contraceptive mandate, the brief said.

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