Church files lawsuit against Washington State: no church should be forced to offer insurance coverage for elective abortions

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) – An Assemblies of God church in Seattle has launched a legal challenge against a state law which mandates the church must provide its employees with health insurance coverage for elective abortion if it also offers coverage for maternity care, CBN News reported Tuesday.

Cedar Park Assembly of God argues that Washington State Senate Bill 6219 is unconstitutional and violates freedom of religion rights guaranteed under the First Amendment of the US Constitution. The law is new, having come into effect in March.

Cedar Park church says Washington State is forcing churches to violate their religious beliefs by making them cover abortions in their health insurance plans, or face fines and criminal penalties, including imprisonment, CBN News reports. The church filed a brief last week, asking the US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit to reverse a lower court’s decision to dismiss its lawsuit against the state.

Representing the plaintiffs, Alliance Defending Freedom Legal Counsel Elissa Graves told CBN News: “No church should be forced to cover abortions, and certainly not a church that dedicates its ministry to protecting and celebrating life like Cedar Park does.”

“Cedar Park believes and teaches that every human life begins at conception and is worthy of protection until natural death, so providing insurance coverage for abortions is clearly not something the church can or should be forced to do,” Graves said.

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