Religious Leaders' Statement
On Birth Control, Religious Freedom, and Conscience
As religious leaders, we affirm the value of birth control as morally good for both individuals and society. As many religious traditions teach, the decision to become pregnant and have children is one of the most important commitments people make. These decisions affect our whole society and require responsible policies that involve us all, whether we experience the sacred joy of parenthood ourselves or we are partners in creating a culture of loving care.
The ability to decide when and under what circumstances to have children is critical to the health, happiness, and stability of women and families across the globe. We believe in expanding the availability of health care resources—especially to those individuals and communities whose options have been disproportionately limited by income, race, or other factors. As religious leaders, we support public policies that make birth control more economically accessible.
We believe that decisions about birth control are a matter of individual conscience. Individuals—not employers—should be responsible for making choices about birth control. To preserve both fairness and religious freedom, institutions that employ and serve the general public should not be allowed to discriminate for religious reasons. As religious leaders, we call for public policies that protect each person's ability to access and use birth control according to their own conscience and religious beliefs.
NOTE: The deadline to sign-on is Noon Eastern on Tuesday, July 31.
Please Note: this statement is for religious leaders only, meaning clergy, professors, heads of religious organizations, or others with prominent roles in their communities.