New Bill Bans Religious & Pro-Life Organizations from Requiring Employees to be Pro-Life in Practice

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Another California legislator has introduced a bill to punish religious organizations for codes of conduct considered discriminatory. Last year, it was Senator Ricardo Lara’s SB 1146, which sought to take away Cal Grants from universities with policies espousing a historically Biblical view of gender and sexuality. This year, the attack targets faith-based codes of conduct related to abortion, contraception, and sex outside of marriage, but instead of just affecting universities, this bill (AB 569), as it is currently written, applies to any organization or business, including churches. And instead of the state threatening to withdraw state funding as a punishment as with SB 1146, this bill bans these religiously motivated moral codes outright.

The bill’s author Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher and its sponsor NARAL Pro-Choice of California believe organizations, even religious ones, are “invading the privacy and personal lives of women” when they prohibit any of their “reproductive choices,” including abortion or extramarital sex. Gonzalez Fletcher amended the bill to exempt ministers working for churches, but she said the bill will definitely apply to religious universities and other pro-life non-profits.

“A woman should never face repercussions in the workplace for her reproductive choices,” said Assemblywoman Gonzalez Fletcher. “It’s unacceptable.”

California Family Council President Jonathan Keller agreed that many churches, religious groups, and pro-life organizations do require employees to sign statements of faith or codes of conduct as conditions of employment. In fact, Keller went further by pointing out that organizations must implement these policies if they are to be faithful to their religious beliefs and core mission.

“Every organization that promotes a pro-life message must be able to require its employees to practice what they preach,” said Keller. “The right to freely exercise one’s religion is enshrined in our Constitution, and has always protected every American’s ability to freely associate around shared beliefs and practices. It is unconscionable for any politician to attempt to abridge this sacrosanct religious liberty by inserting themselves into the employee-employer relationship.”

Gonzalez Fletcher describes herself as a very religious Catholic and personally pro-life, but proudly touts her 100 percent pro-choice voting record. The public information she released about AB 569 avoids using the word “abortion,” but instead focuses the bill’s intent on protecting unmarried women from being “punished financially for becoming pregnant and having children.”  NARAL Pro-Choice of California focuses on the same argument, but does mention abortion in its press release headline.

AB 569 has two main provision. First, the bill prohibits an employer from “any adverse employment action” against any employee that uses any “drug, device, or medical service related to reproductive health.” This would include all medical abortion and contraception methods used by an employee or the employee’s dependents (including children up to 26 years old). According to the author, codes of conduct regarding any sexual activity outside of marriage would also be banned. An “adverse employment action” would include anything from termination, job reassignment, or any other disciplinary action.

Second, the bill would prohibit employers from even requiring employees to sign any document denying them “the right to make his or her own reproductive health care decision.” So requiring employees to promise to abide by codes of conduct that prohibit abortion, any form of contraception, or even extramarital sexual activity would be prohibited.

AB 569 has already been approved by Assembly and will now be considered in the Senate Labor Committee on June 28th and Senate Judiciary Committees over the next few weeks.  Now is the time to contact the members of Senate Labor and Senate Judiciary  committees and tell them to defend religious liberty by opposing AB 569.

(9) Comments

  1. As a Strong Pro-Choice Catholic Gonzales Fletchers might be looked at as a hypocrite for conflicted views. How can she have two different value systems. If she is Catholic then she believes that life starts at conception. But as this same,Catholic, Gonzales Fletcher casts her vote for Pro-Choice she knows that is a vote for murder. And as her Catholic beliefs have taught her taking a life is against the commandment that states “Though shall not kill”. Does she think she still gets to go to heaven. So God is forgiving of her hand in murder just because she chose to be a politician. I think she is in denial. I believe and know God will forgiving her. All she must do is ask Him and she must not put the hardship of any person over the very existence of another person ever. Amen☮

  2. Gonzales Fletcher is a “Religious Catholic “. I wonder what she thinks God would say to her yes vote 100% of the time for Pro-Choice issues. As a Catholic she is taught that life begins at conception. How can she put the hardship in one’s life above the existence of anothers life, ever! As humans life’s wisdom and grit often come from the hardships we have to face as we go about the work of gaining eternal life. We should never allow someone else to suffer in our place. That is for cowards.

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    My Child!
    Before the dawn of Creation, I thought of you,
    Before the dawn of Creation, I thought of you,
    Before the mist blew through the heavens, I thought of you;
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    For you, my pet, are the jewel of My creation.
    Before the dawn of Creation, I had a plan for you.
    Your eyes are the color of a small sparrow’s wing,
    Your skin is as dark as the coal in the earth;
    And again, your eyes are azure blue,
    Your skin is brown like My mother’s.
    I had a plan for you from the dawn of Creation.
    For centuries the grass blew softly on the great prairies.
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    When the blue water cascades down the mountains no more,
    I will be with you;
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    My pet, My creation! What are they doing to you?
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    With the suction, like a hurricane, they pull and tear you;
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    The salt in your mouth, when you were to sing for Me!
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    Before the dawn of Creation, I thought of you,
    I love you.
    I will love you all of eternity.
    -Charles Goering

    Regards: The Jewel of My Creation

    This verse was written December 1975 and first printed in The Minnesota DAILY; thereafter, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, etc.. The poetry is what the writer thinks Jesus Christ might say and share with each of His unborn children being aborted.

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