, a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Christian university, has joined the myriad of lawsuits against the HHS mandate requiring abortion-inducing drugs as part of employee insurance coverage.
This filing is first and foremost an effort to preserve and protect our religious freedom as guaranteed by the First Amendment,” Cornerstone President Joseph Stowell wrote in an email Wednesday to donors and alumni. “Given our conviction that life begins at conception and our commitment to the sanctity of life, we find the mandate to provide our faculty, staff, and students with insurance that provides access to abortion-inducing pills unacceptable. The government should not be able to force us to buy or provide insurance that gives access to morally objectionable drugs, devices, and services that violate our biblical convictions.”
The Alliance Defending Freedom organization, based in Scottsdale, Ariz. is representing Cornerstone University. According to the Becket Fund For Religious Liberty, there are currently 74 cases and over 200 plaintiffs involved in suits against the federal government’s HHS mandate, which requires employers to provide coverage for abortion, artificial birth control and so-called “emergency” contraception in employee health care packages.
Cornerstone’s President Stowell notes in his statement that the university does offer some contraceptive coverage for employees, but cannot, in good faith, offer abortion-inducing medications.
The employee health insurance plan we offer covers most contraceptives, but we have chosen, for religious reasons, to exclude those contraceptives that sometimes cause early abortions,” he wrote.