USCCB Chairmen Applaud New HHS Initiatives on Conscience and Religious Freedom

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About Religious Liberty

“At the very heart of human freedom is the right to religious freedom, since it deals with man’s most fundamental relationship: his relationship with God.” – Pope John Paul II, Address to Diplomats, January 2005

Religious Liberty at USCCB

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/policies-issues/faith-public-square/abortion-procreation-bioethics-end-life-legal-and-policy-issues

Perspectivas: Importantes Alertas de Acción; Semana de las Escuelas Católicas

Alertas actuales – Favor de actuar hoy, fechas límite inminentes

Diga a los legisladores que emitan un voto de ‘No” en torno al proyecto de ley que ordenaría se provean píldoras abortivas en los centros de salud de las universidades – SB 320 (Leyva, D-Chino) requeriría que los centros de salud localizados en los planteles de las universidades públicas, en California, ofrezcan fármacos que inducen abortos, como el RU-486, ya que los partidarios siguen promoviendo abortos de cualquier forma posible.  El proyecto de ley fue aprobado en los dos consejos del Senado y ahora va en camino al plenario.  ¡Favor de actuar el día de hoy!

Súmase a la campaña de la CCC en Twitter para apoyar a DACA –La Conferencia Católica de California (CCC) ha emprendido una campaña en Twitter  instando a los legisladores para que apoyen una solución permanente para el programa de la Acción Diferida para Llegados en la Infancia (Delayed Action for Childhood Arrivals – DACA).

Vea nuestra Página de Twitter  y retuite´ nuestro mensaje para ayudar a garantizar que nuestros legisladores vean la importancia que tiene DACA para tantas personas en nuestro estado y a lo largo de nuestro país.

Las negociaciones en torno a DACA siguen cambiando a cada hora. Visite la emisión de la CCC en Twitter  y Página de Facebook  con regularidad para enterarse de los últimos acontecimientos.  Lea nuestro artículo documental sobre algunos destacados recipientes de DACA en California, aquí.

 

Semana Nacional de las Escuelas Católicas inicia el 28 de enero

El lema de la Semana Nacional de las Escuelas Católicas de este año es “Escuelas Católicas: Aprende. Sirve. Dirige. Triunfa.” Los eventos tendrán lugar del 28 de enero hasta el 3 de febrero. Las celebraciones incluirán Misas, “casas abiertas” (open houses), y otras actividades para los estudiantes, familiares, feligreses, y la comunidad en general.

Debido a que las escuelas católicas a menudo tienen mejor funcionamiento que las escuelas del sector público y del sector privado, va en aumento la demanda y el entusiasmo por las escuelas católicas.

En una declaración publicada el año pasado, los Obispos Católicos de California expresaron sentirse orgullosos de que “las escuelas católicas sigan formando a todos los estudiantes, incluyendo a los inmigrantes recién llegados y a los estudiantes frecuentemente relegados a los márgenes de la sociedad. Sabemos que, con la gracia de Dios y nuestro empeño colaborativo concertado, las escuelas católicas de California tienen un futuro sólido”.

Para mayor información, pulse aquí o visite nuestra Página de Educación  para enterarse de otros temas importantes relacionados a la educación en California.

También puede ver qué eventos y “casas abiertas” locales ofrecerá su diócesis para la Semana de las Escuelas Católicas.

 

Marchas por la Vida y eventos en California para el 2018

Los católicos y otras personas de fe realizarán diversas manifestaciones públicas esta semana y la próxima para afirmar su apoyo a la vida.  Estas marchas y reuniones, que tienen lugar cada año cerca del aniversario de la decisión de Roe v. Wade, han crecido más y más cada año.

Pulse en los siguientes enlaces para encontrar un evento que celebre el don sagrado de la vida:

·      Una Vida (One Life) LA – Los Ángeles, sábado 20 de enero de 2018

·      Caminata por la Vida de la Costa Oeste (Walk for Life West Coast) – San Francisco, sábado 27 de enero de 2018

·      Caminata por la Vida en San Diego (San Diego Walk for Life)  - San Diego, sábado 20 de enero de 2018

·      Simposio Juvenil Elije la Vida 2018 (Choose Life 2018 Youth Symposium) – Sacramento, martes 22 de enero de 2018

La Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU. (USCCB, por sus siglas en inglés) ha auspiciado la Vigilia Nacional de Oración por la Vida, que inició ayer, pero aún hay tiempo para sumarse a la peregrinación digital de oración y acción de los 9 Días por la Vida , enfocado en la apreciación del don de la vida de cada persona.

 

Elementos de acción para el Mes de Prevención de la Trata de Personas

Enero es el Mes de Prevención y de la Toma de Conciencia sobre la Trata de Personas. Cada año, se calcula que aproximadamente 17,000 hombres, mujeres y niños son traficados por nuestras fronteras para luego ser obligados a trabajar como esclavos. Muchos de ellos han huido de situaciones terribles en sus países de origen, y los refugiados y niños que han viajado solos son especialmente vulnerables.

Aunque piense que lo que usted puede hacer para ayudar a combatir esta atrocidad humana es poco, realmente hay muchas cosas que puede hacer, incluyendo mantenerse alerta para ayudar a identificar a las víctimas de la trata de personas

A través de los materiales de la USCCB – Become A Shepherd Toolkit –  puede informarse sobre la trata de personas, desde una perspectiva católica, preparándose con las herramientas educativas para crear conciencia sobre la trata de personas en las parroquias, escuelas u otras redes sociales.

Continúe leyendo

19 de enero de 2018
Tomo 11, No. 3

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/espanol/perspectivas/perspectivas-importantes-alertas-de-acci%C3%B3n-semana-de-las-escuelas-cat%C3%B3licas

Insights: Important Action Alerts; Catholic Schools Week

Tell Legislators to Vote ‘No” on Bill to Mandate Abortion Pills at College Health Centers – SB 320 (Leyva, D-Chino) would require the on-campus health centers of public universities in California to offer abortion-inducing drugs like RU-486 as advocates continue to promote abortions in any way they can.  The bill passed the two Senate committees and is now headed to the floor.  Please take action today!

Join CCC Twitter Campaign to Support DACA -The California Catholic Conference (CCC) has embarked upon a Twitter campaign urging lawmakers to support a permanent solution for the Delayed Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

Check out our Twitter Page and retweet our post to help ensure our lawmakers see the importance of DACA for so many in our state and across the country.

The negotiations regarding DACA continue to change by the hour. Visit the CCC Twitter feed and Facebook Page regularly for the latest developments.  Read our feature story on some outstanding California DACA recipients here.

 

National Catholic Schools Week Begins Jan. 28

The theme of this year’s National Catholic Schools Week is “Catholic Schools: Learn. Serve. Lead. Succeed.” Events will take place from January 28 through February 3. Celebrations will include Masses, open houses, and other activities for students, families, parishioners, and the community at large.

As Catholic schools frequently outperform schools in both the public and private sectors, the demand and enthusiasm for Catholic schools is growing.

In a released statement last year, the California Catholic Bishops expressed their pride that “Catholic schools continue to educate all students, including the newly arrived immigrant and the often neglected student on the margins of society. We know that, with God’s grace and our concerted, collaborative effort, California’s Catholic schools have a robust future.”

For more information, click here or visit our Education page for more on important educational issues in California.

You can also check in with your diocese for local Catholic Schools Week events and open houses.

 

2018 California Life Marches and Events

Catholics and other people of faith will hold several public demonstrations this week and next to affirm their support of life.  Held each year near the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision, the marches and gatherings have grown larger and larger each year.

Click on the links below to find an event to celebrate the sacred gift of life.

·      One Life LA – Los Angeles, Saturday, January 20, 2018

·      Walk for Life West Coast – San Francisco, Saturday, January 27, 2018

·      San Diego Walk for Life  - San Diego, Saturday, January 20, 2018

·      Choose Life 2018 Youth Symposium – Sacramento, Tuesday, January 22, 2018

The USCCB hosted the National Prayer Vigil for Life started yesterday but there is still time to join the 9 Days for Life digital pilgrimage of prayer and action focused of cherishing the gift of every person’s life. 

 

Human Trafficking Prevention Month Action Items

January is Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention Month. Each year, an estimated 17,000 men, women and children are trafficked across our borders and then forced into slavery. Many are fleeing terrible situations in their home countries, and refugees and unaccompanied children are especially vulnerable.

While you may feel there is little that you can do to help combat this human atrocity, there is actually much you can do, including keeping a watchful eye to help identify victims of human trafficking

Through USCCB’s Become A Shepherd Toolkit, you can learn about human trafficking from a Catholic perspective, equipping yourself with the educational tools to raise awareness of human trafficking in parishes, schools, or other social networks.

Continue Reading

January 19, 2018
Vol. 11, No. 3

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/insights-important-action-alerts-catholic-schools-week

2018 California Life Marches and Events

1119 K Street 2nd Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814  |  916 313-4000 | General Email: leginfo@cacatholic.org | © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/2018-california-life-marches-and-events

Human Trafficking Prevention Month Action Items

1119 K Street 2nd Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814  |  916 313-4000 | General Email: leginfo@cacatholic.org | © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/human-trafficking-prevention-month-action-items

A.3740, Dinowitz / S.4278, Ranzenhofer: In relation to chemical digestion of human remains

Published on January 16th, 2018

Memorandum Requesting Amendment

The above-referenced bill seeks to amend the definition of “cremation” under the Not-For-Profit Corporation Law to include “any other technical process.”

The New York State Catholic Conference opposes the prospect that this bill under the amended definition would allow for a process known as alkaline hydrolysis.

The Catholic Conference understands that crematories across the state are constantly evolving to meet the needs of New York State residents and cemeteries are increasingly dealing with issues regarding burial space. We agree that allowing the cemetery board to authorize new cremation processes would be both more expedient and allow for the industry to help determine the value of regulatory proposals through the public comment rule-making process.

The Catholic Conference, however, is concerned that processes such as alkaline hydrolysis and potentially other processes involving an abundant use of chemicals to digest human remains do not sufficiently respect the dignity of the human body. The Church’s reverence for the sacredness of the human body and its dignity arises out of concern for both the body’s natural and supernatural properties. It is therefore essential that the body of a deceased person be treated with respect and reverence.

Therefore, if this bill does move forward, it is suggested that safeguards be added to prohibit processes such as alkaline hydrolysis from being considered during the rule making process. Such a prohibition would still allow crematories across the state to gain access to new innovations in the field while also ensuring the dignity of the deceased’s body is preserved.

Article source: http://www.nyscatholic.org/2018/01/a-3740-dinowitz-s-4278-ranzenhofer-in-relation-to-chemical-digestion-of-human-remains/

Perspectivas: Impulso para proteger a los “Soñadores” (Dreamers); Avanza proyecto de ley de abortos químicos

Beneficiarios de DACA – Manteniendo vivo el sueño americano

Desde el 2012, el programa de Acción Diferida para personas llegadas en la infancia, o DACA (por sus siglas en inglés), ha concedido permisos de trabajo y protección contra la deportación a jóvenes inmigrantes indocumentados que llegaron al país cuando eran niños. Hoy, más de un cuarto de los 800,000 beneficiarios de DACA, a quienes frecuentemente se les llama “Soñadores” (Dreamers), viven en California. Aunque hayan llegado a los Estados Unidos por distintos caminos, su dedicación a las comunidades donde viven es muy similar.

(Baje un archivo PDF de este artículo apto para utilizarse como encarte en el boletín  o para enviar mensaje al Congreso.)

Uno de esos Soñadores (Dreamers) es Jesús Limón, que fue traído a los EE.UU. desde México cuando tenía ocho años de edad. Limón ha dicho que sus años de crianza en California estuvieron repletos de momentos de temor e incertidumbre debido a su estatus migratorio. Pero Limón atribuye a su fe en Dios la fortaleza que le ayudó a superar los tiempos difíciles.

Él también cree que el poder aportar a la comunidad es de capital importancia. En el pasado, Limón trabajó como redactor profesional de subvenciones y como instructor voluntario. “He entendido cómo la alfabetización puede potenciar a las comunidades,” dijo. Después de que se promulgó DACA, Limón obtuvo su título de Maestría y empezó a trabajar como profesor asistente y ponente de la materia de inglés en las universidades del área de Sacramento.  “Hubo un cambio enorme en cuanto a mi situación económica,” dijo.

Continúe leyendo

 

No hay grandes sorpresas en el presupuesto que el Gobernador propone

Al anunciar las últimas propuestas para el presupuesto, de sus cuatro términos como Gobernador del Estado Dorado, el Gobernador Jerry Brown parece mezclar los ahorros con inversiones y está garantizando su legado a la vez que “ata” los cabos sueltos.

En lo que para él ha sido típico últimamente, el Gobernador ha advertido que la actual recuperación económica pronto podría convertirse en una de las más largas de la historia del Estado, pero que la recuperación no puede durar eternamente.

Sumando a la cantidad ordenada por los votantes en la Proposición 2, añadió $3,5 mil millones al fondo de ahorros para los malos tiempos, lo cual llevará a cumplir su meta 100 por ciento para finales del año 2019.  El Gobernador hizo la observación de que la nueva ley Federal de impuestos aumentó la incertidumbre para el futuro fiscal del Estado, justificando así su contribución suplementaria a ese fondo.  

En lo que equivale a una estrategia de “mantenimiento”, el Gobernador Brown destacó un aumento en los fondos para la educación de los niveles K-12; una continuación en los fondos para el seguro médico para los niños y programas de Medi-Cal, no obstante la incertidumbre que existe a nivel nacional; e “inversión” en los campos como la infraestructura (Por ejemplo, el mantenimiento de las carreteras a través del nuevo impuesto sobre la gasolina), las líneas ferroviarias de alta velocidad que él caracteriza como mejorías en el corredor para “las personas que viajan diariamente a sus trabajos de una ciudad a otra’ y programas de vivienda que la legislatura aprobó el año pasado.

Continúe leyendo

 

Avanza proyecto de ley de abortos químicos en los planteles universitarios

Continuando su campaña para promover el aborto, los partidarios del proyecto de ley SB 320 (Leyva, D-Chino) pasaron su proyecto sin impedimentos por el Consejo de Educación del Senado esta semana y el mismo ahora se dirige al Consejo de Asignación de Fondos del Senado. Este proyecto de ley requeriría que los centros de salud localizados en los planteles de las universidades públicas, en California, ofrezcan fármacos para inducir el aborto o que obtengan transporte para que las estudiantes sean llevadas a un proveedor de abortos cercano.

Pulse aquí para enviar una carta dirigida a su Senador estatal de California para decirle que nunca debería haber un incentivo  para abortar a una criatura, y que usted se opone a este proyecto de ley tendencioso.  Pulse aquí para mayor información sobre el proyecto SB 320.

Obispos emprenden campaña de “9 Días por la Vida” el 18 de enero

 

El 18 de enero, la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU.  emprenderá la campaña nacional de “9 Días por la Vida” haciendo un llamado a los católicos y a los fieles para que se unan en una “peregrinación digital” de 9 días enfocada en la valoración del don de la vida humana desde el momento de la concepción hasta la muerte natural.

 

Vea una lista de importantes acontecimientos relacionados a la vida por celebrarse próximamente en California.

 

La campaña abarca la Jornada de Oración para la Protección Legal de los Niños Aún No Nacidos , la cual tiene lugar en el aniversario de la decisión de la Corte Suprema, Roe v. Wade—la cual legalizó el aborto en los Estados Unidos durante todo el embarazo. Se les pide a los participantes que oren y que participen en una gestión unificada centrada en la intención específica del día y podrán subscribirse para recibir mensajes diarios enwww.9daysforlife.com. Los materiales para los líderes, incluyendo dossier de prensa, disponibles en www.usccb.org/9-days-for-life-toolkit

 

Obispos se pronuncian sobre la terminación del programa TPS para los salvadoreños

El 8 de enero, el Departamento de Seguridad Nacional (Department of Homeland Security – DHS) anunció que dará por terminado el Estatus de Protección Temporal (TPS, por sus siglas en inglés) para El Salvador. TPS es un programa migratorio humanitario autorizado estatutariamente, temporal, y renovable, que permite a las personas permanecer y trabajar legalmente en los EE.UU. durante un periodo en que se considera es peligroso para sus ciudadanos regresar a ese país. La gran mayoría de los beneficiarios del TPS en los EE.UU. son salvadoreños.

En una declaración publicada, el Arzobispo José H. Gómez lamentó las graves injusticias que esta decisión inducirá diciendo: “Ahora estas familias enfrentan una difícil decisión sobre su futuro — ya sea permanecer juntos y regresarse a El Salvador para posiblemente enfrentar la violencia y la explotación o separarse, posiblemente de manera permanente, para que los niños puedan quedarse aquí, en un entorno seguro, con todos los beneficios de ser ciudadanos de los EE.UU.”.

“Esta es una elección inhumana que nadie tendría que hacer,” dijo.

Actualmente hay 200,000 residentes con estatus de TPS viviendo en los EE.UU., que tienen a 193,000 hijos que son ciudadanos de los EE.UU.

Según el Obispo Kevin Vann de la Diócesis de Orange, “Esta es una decisión más, mal planteada, de una administración que hace caso omiso de las enormes contribuciones que los inmigrantes han hecho a nuestro país y que ha perdido de vista la larga historia de los Estados Unidos de ser un refugio seguro para las personas que huyen del peligro en el extranjero”.  

Continúe leyendo

 12 de enero de 2018
Tomo 11, No. 2

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/espanol/perspectivas/perspectivas-impulso-para-proteger-los-%E2%80%9Cso%C3%B1adores%E2%80%9D-dreamers-avanza-proyecto-de

Insights: Push to Protect Dreamers; Chemical Abortion Bill Advances

DACA Recipients – Keeping the American Dream Alive

Since 2012, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, has granted work permits and protection from deportation to young undocumented immigrants who arrived to the U.S. as children. Today, more than a quarter of DACA’s 800,000 recipients, often referred to as “Dreamers,” live in California. Although their paths to the United States may have been different, the dedication to the community in which they live is quite similar.

(Download a PDF file of this story suitable for use as a bulletin insert or send a message to Congress.)

One such Dreamer is Jesus Limón, who was brought to the U.S. from Mexico when he was eight-years-old. Limón said his time growing up in California was filled with moments of fear and uncertainty due to his residency status. But, Limón credits his faith in God for helping him through hard times.

He also believes giving back to the community is paramount. In the past, Limón worked as a grant writer and as a volunteer tutor. “I learned the way literacy can empower communities,” he said. After DACA was enacted, Limón earned his Master’s degree and began working as an Assistant Professor and English Lecturer at Sacramento area colleges.  “There was a tremendous shift in terms of economics,” he said.

Continue Reading

 

No Big Surprises in Governor’s Budget Proposal

Governor Jerry Brown, announcing the final budget proposals of his four terms as Governor of the Golden State, appears to be mixing savings with investing and insuring his legacy while “wrapping up” loose ends.

In what has been typical for him of late, the Governor cautioned that the current economic recovery might soon become one of the longest in the State’s history but that recoveries do not last forever. 

In addition to the amount mandated by voters in Prop 2, he added $3.5 billion to the rainy day fund which will bring it to 100 percent of its target by the end of 2019.  The new Federal tax law added uncertainty to the State’s fiscal future noted the Governor, in further justifying the supplemental contribution to the fund.

In what amounts to a “maintenance” approach, Governor Brown highlighted increased funding for K-12 education; continued funding for the Children’s Health Insurance and Medi-Cal programs despite the uncertainty at the national level; and “investment” in such areas as infrastructure (e.g. road maintenance through the new gas tax), high-speed rail which he characterizes as “commuter’ corridor enhancements and housing programs which the legislature approved last year.

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College Chemical Abortion Bill Advances

In the continuing quest of advocates to promote abortions, SB 320 (Leyva, D-Chino) cleared the Senate Education Committee this week and is headed to the Senate Appropriations Committee. This bill would require the on-campus health centers of public universities in California to offer abortion-inducing medication or arrange transportation for students to a nearby abortion provider.

Click here to send a letter to your California State Senator and tell him or her that there should never be an incentive to abort any child, and that you oppose this one-sided bill.  Click here for more information on SB 320.

 

Bishops Launch “9 Days of Life” Campaign on Jan. 18

On January 18, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops will launch the national “9 Days for Life” campaign calling Catholics and the faithful together for a 9-day “digital pilgrimage” focusing on cherishing the gift of human life from conception to natural death.

View a list of the major life events upcoming in California.

The campaign surrounds the annual Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children, which occurs on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade—the Supreme court decision that made abortion legal in the United States throughout pregnancy. Participants are called to both prayer and action unified around each day’s specific intention and can subscribe to receive daily messages atwww.9daysforlife.com. Leaders’ resources, including a press kit, are available at www.usccb.org/9-days-for-life-toolkit

 

Bishops Speak Out on Salvadorian TPS Termination

On January 8th, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it is terminating Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador. TPS is a temporary, renewable, and statutorily authorized humanitarian migration program that permits individuals to remain and work lawfully in the U.S. during a period in which it is deemed unsafe for nationals of that country to return home. The vast majority of TPS recipients in the U.S. are Salvadoran.

In a released statement, Archbishop José H. Gomez lamented the travesties this decision will induce saying, “Now these families face a hard decision about their future — either stay together and go back to El Salvador to face likely violence and exploitation or separate possibly permanently so that the children can remain here in safety, with all the benefits of U.S. citizenship.”

“This is an inhumane choice that no one should have to make,” he said.

There are currently 200,000 residents with TPS status living in the U.S. who have 193,000 children who are U.S. citizens.

According to Bishop Kevin Vann of the Diocese of Orange, “This is yet another ill-conceived decision by an administration that ignores the immense contributions to our country by immigrants and that has lost sight of the United States’ long history as a safe haven for people who flee danger abroad.”

Continue Reading

 January 12, 2018
Vol. 11, No. 2

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/insights-push-protect-dreamers-chemical-abortion-bill-advances

Bishops Speak Out on Salvadorian TPS Termination

On January 8th, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it is terminating Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador. TPS is a temporary, renewable, and statutorily authorized humanitarian migration program that permits individuals to remain and work lawfully in the U.S. during a period in which it is deemed unsafe for nationals of that country to return home. The vast majority of TPS recipients in the U.S. are Salvadoran.

In a released statement, Archbishop José H. Gomez lamented the travesties this decision will induce saying, “Now these families face a hard decision about their future — either stay together and go back to El Salvador to face likely violence and exploitation or separate possibly permanently so that the children can remain here in safety, with all the benefits of U.S. citizenship.”

“This is an inhumane choice that no one should have to make,” he said.

There are currently 200,000 residents with TPS status living in the U.S. who have 193,000 children who are U.S. residents.

According to Bishop Kevin Vann of the Diocese of Orange, “This is yet another ill-conceived decision by an administration that ignores the immense contributions to our country by immigrants and that has lost sight of the United States’ long history as a safe haven for people who flee danger abroad.”

Vann, who also serves as chairman of the board of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. continued, “The administration fails to address how it makes the United States any safer to expel people who have been living and working legally as valued residents of our country. Instead of withdrawing their protections, our government should welcome these long-term, settled members of our communities and find ways to give them a permanent path to residency.”

All who have TPS status are employed. California is home to almost 50,000 TPS, the largest number of any state. 

Pope Francis weighed in on the matter imploring that “It must not be forgotten that migration has always existed. Nor should we forget that freedom of movement, for example, the ability to leave one’s own country and to return there, is a fundamental human right.”

The pope went on to call for abandoning “the familiar rhetoric and start from the essential consideration that we are dealing, above all, with persons.”

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/bishops-speak-out-salvadorian-tps-termination

California Life Marches and Events 2018

1119 K Street 2nd Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814  |  916 313-4000 | General Email: leginfo@cacatholic.org | © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/policies-issues/reverence-life/abortion-procreation-bioethics-death-penalty-end-life-legal-and

Personas Beneficiadas Por DACA — Manteniendo Vivo El Sueño Americano

Personas Beneficiadas Por DACA — Manteniendo Vivo El Sueño Americano

“… Consideremos lo siguiente: todos somos inmigrantes en nuestro recorrido por la vida, ninguno de nosotros tiene una morada fija en esta tierra, todos tendremos que irnos algún día” – Papa Francisco 

(In English) A partir del año 2012, el programa de Acción Diferida para los llegados en la Infancia, o DACA, ha concedido permisos de trabajo y protegido de la deportación a incontables jóvenes inmigrantes indocumentados que llegaron a los EE.UU. siendo niños. Hoy, más de una cuarta parte de los 800,000 beneficiados por DACA, a menudo llamados “Soñadores” o “Dreamers,” viven en California. Aunque hayan llegado aquí por distintos caminos, su dedicación a las comunidades donde viven es muy similar.

(Decarque un PDF de este articulo para su uso en el boletín parroquial o mande un mensaje al Congreso.)

Uno de estos Soñadores es Jesús Limón, a quien trajeron de México a los EE.UU. cuando tenía ocho años de edad. Limón dice que pasó por momentos de mucho temor e incertidumbre debido a su estatus migratorio, al ir creciendo en California. Pero Limón considera que su fe en Dios es lo que lo ayudó a sobrellevar esos momentos difíciles. “El hecho de haber crecido a la vuelta de la esquina de una iglesia me brindó una estrategia para lidiar con el temor,” dice Limón. Él también cree que aportar a la comunidad es de primordial importancia. Anteriormente, Limón trabajó como redactor de solicitudes para subsidios y como maestro particular voluntario. “Me di cuenta cómo la alfabetización puede potenciar a las comunidades,” afirma. Después de que DACA fue promulgada, Limón recibió su título de Maestría y empezó a trabajar como profesor coadjutor y conferencista de la materia de inglés en las universidades de la zona de Sacramento. “Hubo un cambio tremendo en cuanto a la situación económica se refiere,” afirmó.

Cuando Karina tenía apenas cuatro años de edad, su padre salió del hogar familiar en México para venir a los Estados Unidos y poder proveer una mejor vida para su familia. Dos años después, Karina, sus hermanas y su madre viajaron para reunirse con él. “Reencontrarnos con papá fue muy gratificante,” dijo. Karina opina que, en sus años de crianza en el Valle Central, la fe siempre desempeñó un papel importante en su vida, especialmente cuando asistió a la universidad. “Cuando estaba aprendiendo sobre la política y el poder, supe que tenía que mantenerme cimentada en la Iglesia,” asegura. Karina cree que el aportar a la comunidad es gratificante y le ha ayudado a dirigir una campaña para abogar a favor de las becas universitarias “Cal Grant”.“Quería que otros Soñadores pudieran ingresar a la universidad,” aseveró.

Los padres de Moisés De León lo trajeron a los Estados Unidos cuando él apenas tenía dos años y medio. Cuando asistió a la escuela preparatoria De La Salle High School, él adoptó el lema de, “Entra para aprender, sal para  servir” y vive su vida en base a esas palabras. Cuando ve la oportunidad de ofrecerse como voluntario en su parroquia localizada en el Área de la Bahía de San Francisco, lo hace sin titubear. Él también colabora con la organización “Catholic Relief Services,” ayudando a las personas necesitadas de alrededor del mundo. A De León le entusiasma que pronto recibirá su título de Licenciatura en psicología para poder seguir aportando ayuda. Cuando se le pregunta sobre su recorrido como persona beneficiada por DACA, De León dice: “Sé que existen muchos obstáculos, pero el hecho de saber que Dios está conmigo alivia mi estrés”.

Ahora los Soñadores enfrentan una nueva ola de incertidumbre debido a que la Administración de Trump está eliminando a DACA por fases. Respectivamente, Limón y De León se han reunido con los asistentes de sus congresistas y funcionarios públicos a nivel estatal y federal para abogar a favor de la Ley de los Sueños (Dream Act) y la reforma migratoria. Limón se siente optimista en torno al futuro de DACA. “Por  las conversaciones que he tenido con algunos líderes en la capital de los EE.UU., tengo muchas esperanzas,” expresó. Karina, quien cuenta con una Licenciatura en Ciencia Política, viajó a Washington, D.C. con la organización “Church World Service” y se reunió con dirigentes del Congreso, exhortándoles a que firmen una nueva Ley de los Sueños (Dream Act)—una vía para la ciudadanía de los EE.UU., sin mayores aumentos designados para un muro o la seguridad fronteriza. A la pregunta de por qué ella tiene una opinión tan firme sobre el trabajo que ella promueve, Karina contesta, “Este lugar es mi casa. He contribuido tanto a ésta”.

Para mas informacion, visite estos sitos de web:
Recursos Catolicos para los estudiantes de DACA en California
Recursos de la Arquidiócesis de Los Ángeles

La Iglesia Católica en California sirve y aboga por los pobres, vulnerables, y los necesitados, no porque ellos sean Católicos, sino porque nosotros somos Católicos.

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/espanol/noticias-en-espanol/personas-beneficiadas-por-daca-%E2%80%94-manteniendo-vivo-el-sue%C3%B1o-americano

No Big Surprises in Governor’s Budget Proposal

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Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/no-big-surprises-governor%E2%80%99s-budget-proposal

Senate Committee Gives New Life to POLST Debate

The Pennsylvania Senate Health and Human Services Committee voted unanimously to advance Senate Bill 623 on December 12, 2017, kicking off the legislative process. There are many more steps before it could become law. The measure would codify the use of Pennsylvania Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST) and is designed to clarify provisions regarding Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) orders.

POLST forms have been used in Pennsylvania for years without official legislative authorization. The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference (PCC) and the Pennsylvania Catholic Health Association (PCHA) have been part of a group of stakeholders working to get statutory controls to govern their use.

Fundamentally, SB 623 would bring necessary regulation to POLST; but as proposed, the bill does not go far enough to safeguard human life. PCC and PCHA are asking for amendments that would assure that these documents are only used in appropriate situations.  The law should guarantee that a POLST would be used solely for patients with a qualifying health status, diagnosis and prognosis where their doctor would “not be surprised if they died within the next year.”

Amending the bill to clarify that POLST applies just to patients determined to be in the end stages of life would put important protections into the law. With the current practice, many facilities ask all patients admitted to a hospital, a long term nursing home, or other health care facility to sign a POLST, even without consulting a doctor.  There has also been an increase in POLST use in healthy patients presenting to primary care physicians for their annual wellness visit.   Patients and their families should pay attention to what they are signing and why. Anyone can and should sign a living will; but most patients should not qualify for POLST.

POLST and end-of-life decision making is complex. The PCC and PCHA consulted with Dr. Ferdinando Mirarchi, Principal Investigator of the TRIAD research series and Chief Medical Scientific Officer of the Institute on HealthCare Directives and the Founder of MIDEOTM (My Informed Decision on VidEO) to learn more. Here is a summary of his answers.

What is POLST?

The term POLST stands for the Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment or locally, Pennsylvania Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment. In other states the form might have a different name such as MOLST or Medical Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment.

POLST is meant to serve as a portable, standing medical order that specifies whether life-sustaining treatment is to be used or withheld for a specific patient in various circumstances.

Who uses a POLST and when?

By its true definition, POLST is not for healthy people or even those with chronic conditions. It is only appropriate for those with terminal illness who are expected to die within a year.

NOTE: PCC and PCHA have concerns because Senate Bill 623 has no such limitation. As written, there are no safeguards to prevent an uninformed young person, or the most at risk, a healthy older person from having a POLST.

Who decides if a POLST is appropriate?

When used properly, a physician in consultation with the patient or designated representative should determine when it is appropriate to have a POLST. Based on moral and ethical principles POLST is only appropriate if there is a diagnosis of advanced chronic, life limiting, or terminal illness. And it is only appropriate if the physician and the patient and/or the family or other representative have first had an in depth conversation about what POLST means. To date, both medical practice and research has shown that physician involvement and in depth conversations have been lacking or absent.

NOTE: Senate Bill 623, nor the companion bill, House Bill 1196, do not require a diagnosis nor impose any condition for appropriateness of POLST. The bills do not require a conversation with a physician or even the review of the patient’s medical records by the signing medical professional.

How is POLST different from a living will or a do-not-resuscitate order?

A POLST is an immediately actionable medical order that is different from a living will.  It may or may not contain a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) order depending on how it is completed.

The orders outlined in this medical document are supposed to be followed by paramedics, nurses, and other physicians even though they may not have been involved in the creation of the initial medical orders.

The POLST form itself is to be honored in a facility such as the hospital and is transportable so it will also be honored in the post-hospital settings such as skilled nursing facilities or in the pre-hospital ambulance settings.

A living will is different from a POLST.  A living will is a legal document outlining a patient’s treatment preferences which can be honored when the patient cannot speak for him or herself.

A living will gives instructions and preferences, but should not obligate medical professionals to follow them. Consider how a typical last will and testament for your property is used.  Simply creating a will for your estate does not give your family the ability to take your assets.  The will has to be triggered and that trigger is your death.  At the time of your death, and only then, can the assets be divided up according to the instructions contained in your will. A living will is triggered when your health status prompts questions about your medical treatment.  The triggering events are when you are not able to consent for yourself and you have an end stage medical condition or have entered a persistent vegetative state.

A DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order (inside or outside a hospital setting) is different from a living will and may or may not be contained in a POLST.  In Pennsylvania, a DNR order is a medical order that pertains to one specific condition, cardiac arrest.  So if a patient agreed to a DNR order, then he or she wishes not to receive CPR in the event of cardiac arrest.

A significant patient safety risk is posed when patients are asked the question of DNR.  We know from years of research that patients with DNR orders are at risk to receive less than the expected medical care when not in a cardiac arrest situation.  We aggressively try to remind health care providers and patients families that a DNR order is not the same as a do not treat order.

Also, a standard living will and POLST are often misinterpreted as DNR orders regardless of what is documented in those forms.

A Patient to Clinician Video is another form of advance directive that is used increasingly.  This new technology allows you to do this on your own or through a trained physician.  However, be careful to understand that an un-scripted video can pose just as significant a patient safety risk as a vague living will or POLST.  There are definite benefits of video if it is “scripted.”    This is to ensure your wishes are not misunderstood by medical providers in your own community or when traveling.  There are a multitude of companies that have deployed video directives and an increasing number of other programs in development.  As such, if approached to consider this in the physician’s office or prompted via a “Do It Yourself” (DIY) app, consider seeking advice from a physician experienced in this field of medicine and be sure he or she is an expert in Patient Safety Advance Care Planning.

What questions about POLST should people discuss with their doctor or other health care practitioner?

Unless you have an advanced chronic, life limiting, or terminal illness, your physician should not even be asking you about POLST; however discussing an advance directive such as a living will is appropriate.

See Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney: What you should know about ADVANCE HEALTH CARE DIRECTIVES from the Bishops of Pennsylvania

If you are of advanced age and your doctor has advised you that you are high risk to die within the current year, then your spouse, children or whomever you have appointed as your health care agent should talk to your doctor.  Decide together:

  • How those who are treating you are going to be aware that you have created a POLST?
  • Will those treating you safely understand your choices if you use a POLST?
  • How will you be treated if you experience a sudden cardiac arrest?
  • How do you wish to be treated when not in cardiac arrest?
  • Will this POLST potentially place you at risk when not in cardiac arrest?

Am I required to have one? What if I refuse?

By law, no one is required to have a POLST form. It is to be a voluntary process. If you refuse a have a form completed and you feel pressured to complete a POLST form, you should ask to speak to the administration of that facility.  Be careful of what you sign when you enter a healthcare facility.  Many patients who have a POLST created are not aware that it is being created for them.  Also, if the facility is not honoring your concerns, then you should report the situation to the Department of Health. Call 1-800-254-5164 and visit www.health.pa.gov to download a complaint form.

End-of-life decision making can be confusing from a secular and medical standpoint, but you may also wonder: what does the Catholic Church teach about POLST and end-of-life decision making?

As Catholics, we believe that we have a responsibility to preserve our life. Suicide and/or assisted suicide are always morally wrong. (Declaration on Euthanasia: Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, 1980)

However, we also believe there are some limited qualifications to the obligation to attempt to preserve life, such as the refusal of overzealous treatment, including medical procedures that are burdensome, dangerous, extraordinary, or disproportionate to the expected outcome. (Catechism of the Catholic Church, #22781995) It is morally permissible to sign a POLST if it follows the documented indications for use, and if it is determined that medical treatments would not offer reasonable hope of benefit or are disproportionately burdensome. “Disproportionately burdensome” means the treatments will impose serious risks or excessive pain to the patient, excessive expense on the family or the community, or other extreme burdens.

Death is not to be feared as the end of our existence, rather it is the doorway to our eternal destiny.

A decision to forego a medical treatment should not be made because a person’s life is judged as not meaningful. If you are approached to sign a POLST document, you should not feel compelled to sign it immediately.  You should discuss your health status with your family and your doctors and then decide if POLST is appropriate for you to complete. To simply complete such documents without knowledge of how they impact your care and treatment is a significant safety risk to you as well as to your family. The most important step in creating a POLST is having a conversation with your medical provider. Make sure your choices are informed and created appropriately for you as an individual.  Take care to outline your end-of-life wishes safely and right.

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/senate-committee-gives-new-life-to-polst-debate/

DACA Recipients—Keeping The American Dream Alive

 “…Let us consider this: we are all immigrants on the journey of life, none of us has a fixed abode in this land, we all must go.” – Pope Francis (03/21/2015)

(En Espanol) Since 2012, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, has granted work permits and protection from deportation to young undocumented immigrants who arrived to the U.S. as children. Today, more than a quarter of DACA’s 800,000 recipients, often referred to as “Dreamers,” live in California. Although their paths to the United States may have been different, the dedication to the community in which they live is quite similar.

(Download a PDF file of this story suitable for use as a bulletin insert.)

One such Dreamer is Jesus Limón, who was brought to the U.S. from Mexico when he was eight-years-old. Limón said his time growing up in California was filled with moments of fear and uncertainty due to his residency status. But, Limón credits his faith in God for helping him through hard times.

He also believes giving back to the community is paramount. In the past, Limón worked as a grant writer and as a volunteer tutor. “I learned the way literacy can empower communities,” he said. After DACA was enacted, Limón earned his Master’s degree and began working as an Assistant Professor and English Lecturer at Sacramento area colleges.  “There was a tremendous shift in terms of economics,” he said.

When Karina was just four-years-old, her father left the family’s home in Mexico to come to the United States and provide a better life for his family.  Two years later, Karina, her sisters and their mother joined him. “Reuniting with my father was really rewarding,” she said. Growing up in the Central Valley, Karina said faith always played an important role in her life, especially as she attended college.  “Even as I was learning about politics and power, I knew I had to stay grounded in the church,” she said. Karina says giving back to the community is rewarding and has helped lead a Cal Grant advocacy campaign.  “I wanted other Dreamers to be able to come into the university,” she said.

Moises De Leon’s parents brought him to the United States from Mexico when he was just two-and-a half- years-old. While attending De La Salle High School, he embraced the motto,  “Enter to learn, leave to serve” and lives his life by those words.  Whenever he sees an opportunity to volunteer at his parish in the San Francisco Bay Area, he does so without hesitation. He also works for Catholic Relief Services, helping those in need around the world. De Leon is excited to receive his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology soon so he can continue giving back.  When asked about his journey as a DACA recipient, de Leon said, “I know there are a lot of obstacles, but knowing God is with me lifts my stress.”

Now Dreamers face a new wave of uncertainty as the Trump Administration is phasing out DACA. Separately, both Limon and De Leon have met with Congressional aides and elected officials on the state and federal level to advocate for the Dream Act and immigration reform. Limon is optimistic about the future of DACA.  “Based on conversations I’ve had with leaders in D.C., I’m really hopeful,” he said. Karina, who has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, traveled to Washington, D.C. with Church World Service and met with Congressional leaders, encouraging them to sign a clean Dream Act—a pathway to U.S. citizenship without increased spending on a border wall or security.  When asked why she feels so strongly about her advocacy work, Karina said, “I’ve found this place to be my home.  I’ve contributed so much.”

For more information

Catholic Resources for DACA Students in California

Archdiocese of Los Angeles DACA Resources

The Catholic Church in California serves and advocates for the poor, vulnerable and those in need not because they are Catholic, but because we are Catholic.

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/daca-recipients%E2%80%94keeping-american-dream-alive

National Migration Week January 7-13

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Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/national-migration-week-january-7-13

Support Professional Development of Teachers

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Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/support-professional-development-teachers

A.5885-A, Rosenthal / S.6575, Hoylman / S.6722, Rules : In relation to civil and criminal changes to the statute of limitations in cases of child sexual abuse

Published on January 8th, 2018

Memorandum of Opposition

The Catholic Church has zero tolerance for sexual abuse and supports proposals in the New York State Legislature to extend the time allowed under the law to file criminal charges or civil lawsuits against those who abuse children.

Sexual abuse is a societal scourge. It knows no boundaries. Protecting children from sexual abuse and safeguarding the legal rights of victims requires a comprehensive approach. While the Catholic Conference strongly supports efforts to prospectively increase the criminal and civil statute of limitations for child sexual abuse, the above-referenced legislation is seriously flawed in that it contains a statute of limitations “window” to open up previously time-barred civil claims going back indefinitely against not only abusers themselves, but against their employers as well. Therefore, the Catholic Conference must strongly oppose this legislation.

This extraordinary provision would force institutions to defend alleged conduct decades ago about which they have no knowledge, and in which they had no role, potentially involving employees long retired, dead or infirm, based on information long lost, if it ever existed. To be clear, the sponsors’ intent is to allow claims from even the 1940s or 1950s to be resurrected.

Statutes of limitation are an essential protection of American law because they ensure that claims can be fairly adjudicated in a timely manner based on credible evidence. The New York State Bar Association has said:

Over time, evidence is lost or destroyed and witnesses die or become unavailable or, when they are available, their memories are less reliable. These circumstances make proof and defense of such actions extremely difficult, if not impossible, for all parties involved. (New York State Bar Association’s Committee on Civil Practice Law and Rules Legislative Report #8, Feb. 25, 2003)

Moreover, this bill is seriously flawed in that it only raises the criminal statute of limitations by five years, until the victim-survivor’s 28th birthday. At the same time, it raises the civil statute of limitations until the victim-survivor’s 50th birthday, in addition to a retroactive window that allows old lawsuits to be brought no matter how long ago the incident occurred. Clearly the bill’s focus on lawsuits against organizations, rather than punishing predators and removing them from our communities, does not in any way achieve a goal of protecting children today or in the future.

While some legislative and policy disagreements about the ideal approach continue, New York State continues to make laudable progress in protecting children. The criminal statute of limitations on charges of rape or felony sexual abuse of a child has been eliminated. These crimes are now treated with the same gravity as murder.

Still more can and should be done. Currently under consideration is an omnibus child protection bill sponsored by Assembly Member Michael Cusick (D-Staten Island) that would extend the civil statute of limitations for sexual abuse lawsuits another five years to the victim’s 28thbirthday, and would apply equally to public and private institutions. The Cusick bill also eliminates the criminal statute entirely, adds clergy to the list of mandated reporters, and requires criminal background checks for all employees and volunteers who work with children in either public or not-for-profit settings. The Catholic Conference strong supports the Cusick bill as the best legislative remedy available to protect children from abuse today and to give victims more time to seek justice, both criminally and civilly.

To reiterate, while we are in agreement with aspects of A.5885-A, the ill-advised “window” to reopen decades-old claims is, in the end, contrary to justice, because simply too much time has gone by in many cases to mount an effective defense, particularly for institutional defendants. We therefore urge the bill be defeated, and for the legislature to instead pass the NYS Child Protection Act (A.7302).

Article source: http://www.nyscatholic.org/2018/01/rosenthal_cva/

A.1378, Cahill / S.3668, Bonacic: In relation to expanding contraceptive insurance coverage

Published on January 8th, 2018

Memorandum of Opposition

The above-referenced legislation, requested by the Attorney General, would expand current law to require increased insurance coverage for contraception, abortion-causing drugs, and voluntary sterilization. The New York State Catholic Conference opposes this measure.

In 2002, New York State lawmakers passed the “Women’s Health and Wellness Act” which requires insurance plans with prescription coverage to cover FDA-approved contraceptive drugs and devices, and provides insufficient protections for religious employers.

The legislation now before you would go further by mandating cost-free contraceptives, requiring that a 12-month supply of contraceptives be covered at one time, and including emergency contraception (EC), the so-called “morning-after pill.” We believe that enabling such large amounts of prescription medication, particularly in such high doses as emergency contraception, to get into the hands of young people is irresponsible and dangerous public policy.

This bill would further expand access to emergency contraception by allowing midwives to prescribe EC, allowing pharmacists and nurses to dispense EC without a patient-specific prescription, requiring insurance coverage for any form of EC without cost-sharing of any kind, and requiring state DOH education and outreach about EC to school educators. Such policy would provide girls as young as 11 or 12 years old easy access to these powerful drugs without parental knowledge or physician oversight. As a matter of state law, many products sold by pharmacies, e.g. tobacco and non-prescription allergy medicine, are restricted to consumers 18 years of age and older.

Medical experts and the FDA agree that emergency contraception can work in various ways. It can act to inhibit or delay ovulation, and thus prevent conception. But it can also act to prevent an already-fertilized egg from implanting in the uterine wall, destroying a developing human embryo. This is early abortion, and it is morally abhorrent to many New Yorkers.

We further oppose this bill because it fails to provide religious liberty protections for employers who may have objections to financing insurance coverage of drugs they find morally objectionable. The legislation keeps in place the inadequate 4-part legal definition of “religious employer” which fails to protect charitable organizations, hospitals and schools sponsored by religious organizations, as well as private organizations. These entities would be forced by this bill to pay for insurance coverage they find objectionable. A.1378 Cahill

Moreover, the language of this legislation creates problems even for those religious employers who do qualify for protection under the 4-part religious exemption. The bill prohibits insurance plans from imposing “restrictions or delays” with regard to “timely access” to contraception, a standard that may not be possible for religious employers which are in the process of obtaining a religious exemption and notifying enrollees.

For these reasons, the New York State Catholic Conference opposes this legislation and urges a negative vote.

Article source: http://www.nyscatholic.org/2018/01/a-1378-cahill-in-relation-to-expanding-contraceptive-insurance-coverage/

A.1748, Glick / S.2796 Krueger In Relation to Abortion Expansion

Published on January 8th, 2018

This legislation is a re-branded attempt to expand abortion in New York State, similar to the failed tenth plank of the 2013 “women’s equality agenda.” But the language is new; it is bolder in its breadth and extremism. It is not a simple update of New York’s laws. The New York State Catholic Conference opposes this bill.

It’s a late-term abortion expansion.

No matter how the bill is re-worded, the primary objective of this legislation is to expand late-term abortion. Current state law says abortions are legal in New York through 24 weeks of pregnancy (Article 125 Penal Law), but outlawed after that unless they are necessary to save a woman’s life. This bill would repeal the Penal Law references to abortion and insert a “health” exception into the newly-written Public Health Law. Such a “health” exception has been broadly interpreted by the courts to include age, economic, social and emotional factors. As a result, this bill will allow abortion for any reason and at any time during a pregnancy, including into the ninth month. It will encourage more late-term abortionists to come into New York and it will lead to more third-trimester abortions in New York State.

Moreover, the language of this legislation specifically allows the abortionist to determine the “absence of fetal viability”; he could determine viability is absent at 24 weeks gestation, or 29 weeks or even 32 weeks gestation. This language will most certainly result in viable unborn children being aborted.

It empowers non-doctors to perform abortions.

Current New York State statutes and regulations are clear in requiring that only licensed physicians may perform abortions in New York. No federal law has ever given permission to non-doctors to perform abortions. This legislation is very specific in reversing these protections, by stating that any health care practitioner licensed under Title Eight of the Education Law may perform an abortion. Practitioners licensed under Title Eight include nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurse mid-wives, as well as a broad range of other non-physicians. This bill would allow the Education Department to authorize any of these non-doctors to do both chemical and surgical abortions.

Empowering non-physicians to perform abortions is a specific goal of abortion advocates as they seek to boost access in the face of a declining number of doctors willing to perform the procedure. It should stand to reason that allowing non-doctors to perform surgery is dangerous for women and infants.

It could compel participation in abortion.

Because the legislative intent of this bill would ordain abortion as a “fundamental right,” the right to abortion could supersede everything, even the right of conscience. The government would have the task of ensuring that there is no “discrimination” against this fundamental right being exercised. This means that doctors could be compelled to perform abortions or risk losing their license to practice. Hospitals and medical facilities, even religious ones, could be forced to allow abortions on site or risk fines, penalties, loss of funding/operational certificates or other punishment. Likewise, health insurance plans could be forced to cover abortion and employers could be forced to purchase such coverage.

It eliminates protections for pregnant women and their unborn children.

Moving abortion from the Penal Law to the Public Health Law is a major policy shift that removes accountability for those who would harm unborn children outside the context of abortion. The crime of “abortional act” is the only place in New York law that allows for criminal charges for violent attacks against pregnant women and their unborn children, which occur with some frequency in cases of domestic violence.

This legislation would remove all current Penal law protections for pregnant women in cases of illegal or unwanted abortion (Penal Law Sections 125.05, 125.40 and 125.45). Repealing these laws – and proposing no penalties whatsoever for violation of the proposed new law — does a grave disservice to pregnant women, the very-much-wanted unborn children they may carry, and any possibility of justice for them when crimes are committed against them.

It jeopardizes live-born children.

Shockingly, this legislation repeals Public Health Law Section 4164, part of which gives full legal protection to any child who might (mistakenly) be born alive as the result of an abortion. It also requires a second doctor to be available during a late-term abortion to help give medical care to any such child. It is difficult to imagine the motivation of bill sponsors in removing these protections, which have been upheld as constitutional.

In 2013 America saw the face of late-term abortion during the trial of former Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell, who was convicted of numerous crimes, including murdering three infants born alive during attempted abortion procedures. The grand jury report on Gosnell states that “he regularly and illegally delivered live, viable babies in the third trimester of pregnancy, and then murdered these newborns by severing their spinal cords with scissors.”

In addition, there have been documented cases of babies born alive during attempted abortions who were left to die of neglect. The intersection of late-term abortions, the potential for live births, and the recent revelations of the transfer of fetal tissues or whole cadavers from clinics to researchers raise grave concerns.

Thankfully, Kermit Gosnell is serving a sentence of life imprisonment and no longer endangers women and infants. But removing this protection from our statute will send a New York “welcome” signal to other late-term abortionists, who are often notorious for disregarding the health and safety of women and children.

The right to abortion does not extend so far as to justify the denial of fundamental civil rights and protections to born, living human children.

It will increase the state’s abortion rate.

As outlined above, we believe the legislation would have dangerous consequences for women and infants. New York’s abortion numbers have been steadily decreasing, from 118,381 reported induced abortions in 2008 to 93,299 reported induced abortions in 2014, according to the most recent report of the NYS Department of Health. We believe this misguided legislation would reverse this encouraging trend and only increase the tragedy of abortion.

We urge you to pause to consider the curious paradox created by this legislation: In one unit of your public hospital, physicians will be taking extreme measures and heroic actions to save the lives of prematurely delivered viable infants, while in another unit, an abortionist will be destroying infants of the very same age, viable babies who could very well survive outside the womb. Can we, as a society, comfortably live with such arbitrary distinctions and callous inconsistencies regarding who lives and who dies?

We strongly urge you to oppose this legislation.

Article source: http://www.nyscatholic.org/2018/01/a-1748-glick-s-2796-krueger-in-relation-to-abortion-expansion/

A.2646-A, Simotas / S.3148-A, Savino: In relation to an insurance mandate for in vitro fertilization

Published on January 8th, 2018

Memorandum of Opposition

The above-referenced legislation would require large group health insurance plans to cover the costs of in vitro fertilization (IVF), gamete and embryo transfers, and other assisted reproductive technologies.  The New York State Catholic Conference opposes this legislation.

While the Catholic Church empathizes with childless married couples yearning for the joys of parenthood, the Conference holds grave concerns with this insurance mandate.  These concerns include the legislation’s a) requirement for funding acts that destroy innocent human embryos, both inside and outside the womb; b) endorsement of technologies which promote the manufacture of human beings, contribute to the breakdown of family relationships, and interfere with the natural act of marital sexual intercourse; and c) lack of any conscience protection for religious employers and those with ethical objections to assisted reproductive technologies.

Destruction of Human Embryos

Many of the assisted reproductive technologies available today, including IVF, routinely involve the creation, freezing, discarding, and systematic destruction of living human embryos in order to bring one healthy child to term. Initially, the process requires the fertilization of numerous eggs in the laboratory in order to be marginally effective. The embryos not implanted are then either discarded immediately or frozen for later use; many do not survive the freezing and defrosting processes. In reality, the majority of embryonic children created by IVF procedures will eventually end up deceased.

Practitioners generally choose to transfer greater numbers of embryos than fewer, to increase the chance that at least one will implant; this increases the likelihood of multiple gestations. According to the NYS Task Force on Life and the Law (Assisted Reproductive Technologies, April 1998, page 128), “The use of fertility drugs and the transfer of multiple embryos into the uterus during IVF creates a recognized risk that more embryos will implant than can safely be carried to term. In recent years, practitioners have relied on access to ‘fetal reduction’ – the destruction of one or more embryos so the remaining ones have a better chance – to manage these hazardous situations.” Simply put, fetal reduction is abortion.

The Catholic Church views the manipulation and destruction of living human embryos through assisted reproductive technologies as an assault on the dignity and value of human life. Each human embryo possesses unique DNA, and need only nutrition and the safe environment of the womb to grow and develop. Living human embryos must not be used as a means to an end because they are, like all precious human beings, an end in and of themselves.

Concerns with Assisted Reproductive Technologies

The Catholic Church supports and assists couples in overcoming infertility through the use of scientifically-based diagnostics, drugs and procedures that assist marital sexual intercourse in reaching its natural procreative potential. This type of “restorative reproductive medicine” can diagnose and resolve underlying fertility issues and treat reproductive disorders in an effective, less invasive, less costly manner than IVF. Restorative reproductive medicine can markedly reduce the chances of multiple pregnancies, premature births and miscarriages, and decrease other potential maternal complications as well.

The Catholic Church cannot support in vitro fertilization because it separates the natural sexual act from the conception of a child. A man and a woman supply the raw material for a technician to produce a child, grow him or her in a nutrient culture, and insert the child into the mother’s womb. This is done in exchange for many thousands of dollars.

IVF procedures are an artificial means of reproduction which treat children as merchandise to be manufactured, bought, and disposed of at will.

It is easy to see how this mentality can lead to other abuses as well, resulting from the desire to manufacture the best product most efficiently. Embryos produced in a laboratory can be pre-screened for genetic defects or a predisposition to certain diseases, or even for gender and eye color, and thrown away if they fail quality control.

Lack of Conscience Protection

This legislation contains no conscience protection for religious employers, religious organizations or closely held for-profit employers with religious objections to certain assisted reproductive technologies. Our Conference has consistently and strongly advocated for the inclusion of protections which would exempt religious institutional employers from paying for such mandates.

Conclusion

Current law already requires health insurance plans to cover the diagnosis and treatment of infertility, but does not extend coverage to IVF, gamete and embryo transfers. Nor does current law extend the coverage mandate to human cloning, sterilization reversals, and experimental procedures, a policy that would be maintained under this legislation. For all of the above-mentioned reasons, we believe New York’s current law draws appropriate lines and we therefore urge lawmakers to reject A.2646/S.3148.

Article source: http://www.nyscatholic.org/2018/01/mandate-for-in-vitro-fertilization/

A.7637-A, Crespo / S.6009-A, Ranzenhofer: In relation to including private and religious schools in school energy efficiency collaboration programs

Published on January 8th, 2018

The above-referenced legislation amends Chapter 403 of the laws of 2016, in relation to including private and religious schools in school energy efficiency collaboration programs.

The New York State Catholic Conference supports this legislation.

New York’s religious and independent schools make considerable efforts to improve the energy efficiency of their facilities. Their efforts, however, are often hampered by limited funding and the difficulties in accessing state and federal energy efficiency programs. This legislation will enable the state’s religious and independent schools to more fully participate in the collective effort to be smarter about our energy use.

Not only will this measure help our schools in the stewardship of their school budgets, but a greater benefit will accrue to all utility rate payers.

For the above reasons, we urge your favorable action on this bill.

Article source: http://www.nyscatholic.org/2018/01/a-7637-a-crespo-s-6009-a-ranzenhofer-in-relation-to-including-private-and-religious-schools-in-school-energy-efficiency-collaboration-programs/

Perspectivas: Regresa proyecto de ley de aborto medicinal; Se legaliza la marihuana

Regresa legislación que alienta a las universidades públicas de CA a proveer abortos medicinales

 

Regresa a la Legislatura, en el 2018, un proyecto de ley sumamente polémico que alentaría a las universidades públicas en California a proveer a las estudiantes medicamentos para inducir abortos. 

Se presentó el proyecto SB 320 (Leyva, D-Chino) el año pasado, pero éste se quedó paralizado en el Comité de la Educación del Senado. Debido a que la Legislatura sigue un programa que tiene sesiones de dos años, el proyecto SB 320 es elegible para presentarse de nuevo este año y se conocerá en el Comité de la Educación del Senado el 10 de enero en el Capitolio del Estado.

(ACTUALIZACIÓN:  El proyecto SB 320 originalmente obligaba una gran parte de lo que ahora se “alienta” y motivaba a los centros de salud a que proporcionaran los medicamentos abortivos.  Las enmiendas se realizaron en la primera semana del 2018.)

La propuesta motivaría a los centros de salud en las instalaciones universitarias de la California State University (CSU) y University of California a ofrecer medicamentos para inducir el aborto o se encargarían del transporte a un proveedor de abortos cercano. Adicionalmente fomenta el que los centros de salud de las instalaciones universitarias ofrezcan abortos médicos y servicios de consejería relacionados al aborto a sus estudiantes, pero deliberadamente excluye los métodos de consejería próvida.  

Actúe ya para oponerse al proyecto de ley SB 320

Continúe leyendo

 

La marihuana de uso recreativo: ¿placer, panacea, veneno?

El Padre Gerald Coleman, profesor adjunto en la Escuela de Posgrado en los Ministerios Pastorales (Graduate School of Pastoral Ministries) de la Universidad de Santa Clara, analiza las diversas cuestiones discutibles en torno a la legalización de la marihuana para uso recreativo, ley vigente en California a partir del 1ro de enero.

El diario New York Times concluyó su artículo, publicado el 28 de diciembre, sobre la legalización de la marihuana para uso recreativo, vigente a partir del 1ro de enero, diciendo: “Las personas se vuelven más confiadas al extenderse la legalización, y esto va a aumentar enormemente”. La marihuana médica es legal en 28 estados, y el uso recreativo de la marihuana es legal en ocho estados. Las empresas que invierten en la marihuana van creciendo de manera exponencial, una buena muestra es el Valle del Silicón y Oakland, especialmente debido a que vender marihuana en California tiene el potencial de generar $5 mil millones al año.

Es preocupante y peligroso el declive moral conforme aumenta el apoyo al uso recreativo de la marihuana en la sociedad (aproximadamente el 58 por ciento de los estadounidenses lo apoyan). California fue el estado que encabezó la legalización de la marihuana médica en el país en 1996. Como se demuestra en el documental del 2013 de nombre Weed  (Mota) del corresponsal médico del canal CNN, el Dr. Sanjay Gupta, se han visto efectos médicos positivos (por ejemplo, aliviar el dolor y la náusea.) Puesto que se acepta en general estos hechos, ahora el siguiente paso sencillamente es llegar a la conclusión de que la marihuana de uso recreativo tiene los mismos efectos curativos. Es una manera simplista de creer que lo que es legal es benéfico y moral.

En enero de 2017, las Academias Nacionales de la Ciencia, la Ingeniería y Medicina (National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine) publicaron un informe de fundamental importancia sobre las investigaciones profesionales realizadas sobre el uso de la marihuana con fines recreativos. Conjuntamente con datos publicados en diciembre de 2017 por la revista Journal of the American Medical Association (Publicación de la Asociación Médica Americana, JAMA)se plantean inquietudes que exigen que las escuelas y municipalidades pongan en marcha, tan rápido como sea posible, programas para la prevención del abuso de sustancias. (Sería bueno que las parroquias, especialmente las que tienen escuelas, consideren realizar talleres instructivos para los padres de familia y los jóvenes.)

Continúe leyendo

 

Semana Nacional de la Migración, 7 al 13 de enero

Por casi medio siglo, la Iglesia católica en los Estados Unidos ha celebrado la Semana Nacional de la Migración, lo cual brinda a la Iglesia la oportunidad de reflexionar sobre las circunstancias que enfrentan los migrantes, incluyendo los inmigrantes, los refugiados, los niños y las víctimas y sobrevivientes de la trata de personas.

Con el lema para la Semana Nacional de la Migración 2018, “Muchos Caminos, Una Familia,” señalamos el hecho de que cada una de nuestras familias tiene una historia de migración, algunas son recientes y otras del pasado lejano. Independientemente de dónde nos encontramos o de dónde vinimos, seguimos siendo parte de la familia humana y tenemos el llamado de vivir en solidaridad el uno con el otro.

La organización de Justicia para Inmigrantes (Justice For Immigrants) cuenta con una variedad de materiales para la Semana Nacional de la Migración, incluyendo un seminario web, caja de herramientas, estampitas con una oración, y un póster. Haga clic aquí para los materiales sobre la conmemoración, incluyendo seminarios web, volantes y artículos para la acción.

 

Enfoque del mes: La pobreza y la prevención de la trata de personas

Durante el Mes de Conciencia de la Pobreza, súmese a los Obispos de los EE.UU., a la  Campaña Católica para el Desarrollo Humano  y a la comunidad católica en los Estados Unidos para asumir el desafío del Papa Francisco de vivir en solidaridad con los pobres.  

Además del calendario que destaca diversas maneras de participar cada día en el mes de enero, también se encuentran disponibles reflexiones diarias más extensas.   Tenemos ayuda pastoral para incorporar a la liturgia el Mes de la Conciencia de la Pobreza. Todos estos materiales también están disponibles en español.  También se puede inscribir para que se le envíen por correo electrónico las reflexiones diarias durante el Mes de Conciencia de la Pobreza.

Enero también es el mes de Prevención de la Trata de Personas.  Descrita como la esclavitud de los tiempos modernos, la trata de personas atrapa a más de 20 millones de personas alrededor del mundo en una esclavitud económica y sexual forzada. Lea más al respecto aquí y aquí.

Haga clic aquí para mayor información.

 

En las próximas semanas

Los líderes del Congreso se reunirán con los miembros del personal de la Casa Blanca para empezar a abordar la amenaza de un cierre del gobierno Federal el 19 de enero. Parece ser que el Presidente presionará para obtener los fondos para la construcción del muro en la frontera con México a la vez que los Demócratas podrían presionar para que se conceda ayuda para los Soñadores (Dreamers).  No hay nada claro, puesto que la postura de ambos partidos suele variar casi cada hora. La próxima semana, destacaremos a tres excepcionales Soñadores de California como parte de la Semana Nacional de la Migración.  Mientras tanto, examine las enseñanzas de los Obispos en nuestra página de la inmigración e inste a sus representantes Federales a que apoyen a los beneficiarios de DACA .

La próxima semana, el Gobernador Jerry Brown revelará su propuesta para el presupuesto del 2019-20.  Los presupuestos del gobierno son “documentos morales” ya que éstos establecen las prioridades de la política pública para la jurisdicción en cuestión. Durante la Gran Recesión, los Obispos de California detallaron el marco que dichos documentos deberían enfrentar.  Lea En Busca del Bien Común ( In Search of the Common Good ) para prepararse para el anuncio del Gobernador.

5 de enero de 2018
Tomo 11, No. 1

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/espanol/perspectivas/perspectivas-regresa-proyecto-de-ley-de-aborto-medicinal-se-legaliza-la

Insights: Medical Abortion Bill Returns; Marijuana Legalized

Legislation Mandating CA Public Colleges Provide Medical Abortions Returns

A highly controversial bill that would mandate California public colleges provide abortion-inducing medication to students is returning to the Legislature in 2018. 

SB 320 (Leyva, D-Chino) was introduced last year but stalled in the Senate Education Committee.  As the Legislature operates on a two-year session schedule, SB 320 is eligible to be brought up again this year and will be heard in the Senate Education Committee on January 10th at the State Capitol.

The proposal would tell student health centers on California State University (CSU) and University of California campuses to offer abortion-inducing medication or arrange for transportation to a nearby abortion provider.  It further requires on-campus health centers to offer abortion-counseling services to their students but deliberately excludes pro-life counseling approaches.

Act Now To Oppose SB 320

Continue Reading

 

Recreational Marijuana: Pleasure, Panacea, Poison?

Fr. Gerald Coleman, adjunct professor in the Graduate School of Pastoral Ministries at Santa Clara University, examines the many open questions surrounding the Jan. 1 legalization of recreational marijuana in California.

The New York Times concluded its December 28 article about the January 1, 2018 legalization of recreational marijuana in California by stating, “People are gaining confidence as legalization spreads, and the growth is going to be huge.” Medical marijuana is legal in 28 states, and recreational marijuana legal in eight states. Companies investing in marijuana are growing exponentially, well-exampled in Silicon Valley and Oakland, especially since selling marijuana in California has the potential to generate $5 billion yearly.

The moral slope is worrisome and dangerous as society grows in its support of recreational marijuana use (about 58 percent of Americans). California led the nation in legalizing medical marijuana in 1996. As demonstrated in the 2013 documentary Weed by CNN medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta, positive medical effects have been witnessed, e.g., treating pain and relieving nausea. Since these facts are generally accepted, it is now a simple next step to conclude that recreational marijuana likewise carries curative effects. It’s a facile approach to believe that what is legal is beneficial and moral.

In January 2017, the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine released a pivotal report on professional research carried out about the use of marijuana for recreational purposes. Along with December 2017 facts released by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA)serious concerns are raised that demand schools and local municipalities to put into place as quickly as possible substance abuse prevention programs. (Parishes, especially those with schools, would do well to consider educational workshops for parents and youth.)

Continue Reading

 

National Migration Week January 7-13

For nearly half of a century, the Catholic Church in the United States has celebrated National Migration Week, which is an opportunity for the Church to reflect on the circumstances confronting migrants, including immigrants, refugees, children, and victims and survivors of human trafficking.

The theme for National Migration Week 2018, “Many Journeys, One Family,” draws attention to the fact that each of our families have a migration story, some recent and others in the distant past. Regardless of where we are and where we came from, we remain part of the human family and are called to live in solidarity with one another.

Justice For Immigrants has a variety of resources for National Immigration Week including a webinar, toolkit, prayer card, and poster. Click here for resources on the commemoration, including webinars, flyers and action items.

 

Poverty, Trafficking Prevention in Focus this Month

During Poverty Awareness Month, join the U.S. Bishops, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development and the Catholic community in the United States in taking up Pope Francis’ challenge to live in solidarity with the poor.

In addition to a calendar featuring ways to participate each day during the month of January, longer daily reflections are also available.  There is a liturgical aid to incorporate Poverty Awareness Month into the liturgy. All of these resources are also in Spanish.  You can also sign up to have the daily reflections emailed to you during Poverty Awareness Month.

January is also Human Trafficking Prevention month.  Described as modern day slavery, human trafficking traps more than 20 million people around the world in forced economic and sexual enslavement.  Read more about it here and here.

Click here for more.

 

In the Coming Weeks

Congressional leaders are meeting with White House staffers to start dealing with the threat of a Federal government shut-down on January 19.  It appears the President will push for funding for a wall on the Mexican border while the Democrats may push for relief for Dreamers.  Nothing is clear, as the position of both parties tend to vary almost on an hourly basis.  Next week, we’ll profile three outstanding California Dreamers as part of National Migration Week.  In the meantime, examine the Bishops’ teachings on our Immigration page and urge your Federal representatives to support DACA recipients.

Next week, Governor Jerry Brown will reveal his budget proposal for 2019-20.  Government budgets are “moral documents” since they lay out the public policy priorities for the jurisdiction in question.  During the Great Recession, the California Bishops detailed the framework such documents should face.  Read In Search of the Common Good to prepare for the Governor’s announcement.

January 5, 2018
Vol. 11, No. 1

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/insights-medical-abortion-bill-returns-marijuana-legalized

Insights: Medicinal Abortion Bill Returns; Marijuana Legalized

Legislation Encouraging CA Public Colleges to Provide Medicinal Abortions Returns

A highly controversial bill that would encourage California public colleges to provide abortion-inducing medication to students is returning to the Legislature in 2018. 

SB 320 (Leyva, D-Chino) was introduced last year but stalled in the Senate Education Committee.  As the Legislature operates on a two-year session schedule, SB 320 is eligible to be brought up again this year and will be heard in the Senate Education Committee on January 10th at the State Capitol.

(UPDATE:  SB 320 originally mandated much of what is now “encouraged” and incentivizes health care centers to provide the abortion medication.  The amendments were made the first week of 2018.)

The proposal would incentivize student health centers on California State University (CSU) and University of California campuses to offer abortion-inducing medication or arrange for transportation to a nearby abortion provider.  It further encourages on-campus health centers to offer medical abortions and abortion-counseling services to their students but deliberately excludes pro-life counseling approaches.

Act Now To Oppose SB 320

Continue Reading

 

Recreational Marijuana: Pleasure, Panacea, Poison?

Fr. Gerald Coleman, adjunct professor in the Graduate School of Pastoral Ministries at Santa Clara University, examines the many open questions surrounding the Jan. 1 legalization of recreational marijuana in California.

The New York Times concluded its December 28 article about the January 1, 2018 legalization of recreational marijuana in California by stating, “People are gaining confidence as legalization spreads, and the growth is going to be huge.” Medical marijuana is legal in 28 states, and recreational marijuana legal in eight states. Companies investing in marijuana are growing exponentially, well-exampled in Silicon Valley and Oakland, especially since selling marijuana in California has the potential to generate $5 billion yearly.

The moral slope is worrisome and dangerous as society grows in its support of recreational marijuana use (about 58 percent of Americans). California led the nation in legalizing medical marijuana in 1996. As demonstrated in the 2013 documentary Weed by CNN medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta, positive medical effects have been witnessed, e.g., treating pain and relieving nausea. Since these facts are generally accepted, it is now a simple next step to conclude that recreational marijuana likewise carries curative effects. It’s a facile approach to believe that what is legal is beneficial and moral.

In January 2017, the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine released a pivotal report on professional research carried out about the use of marijuana for recreational purposes. Along with December 2017 facts released by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA)serious concerns are raised that demand schools and local municipalities to put into place as quickly as possible substance abuse prevention programs. (Parishes, especially those with schools, would do well to consider educational workshops for parents and youth.)

Continue Reading

 

National Migration Week January 7-13

For nearly half of a century, the Catholic Church in the United States has celebrated National Migration Week, which is an opportunity for the Church to reflect on the circumstances confronting migrants, including immigrants, refugees, children, and victims and survivors of human trafficking.

The theme for National Migration Week 2018, “Many Journeys, One Family,” draws attention to the fact that each of our families have a migration story, some recent and others in the distant past. Regardless of where we are and where we came from, we remain part of the human family and are called to live in solidarity with one another.

Justice For Immigrants has a variety of resources for National Immigration Week including a webinar, toolkit, prayer card, and poster. Click here for resources on the commemoration, including webinars, flyers and action items.

 

Poverty, Trafficking Prevention in Focus this Month

During Poverty Awareness Month, join the U.S. Bishops, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development and the Catholic community in the United States in taking up Pope Francis’ challenge to live in solidarity with the poor.

In addition to a calendar featuring ways to participate each day during the month of January, longer daily reflections are also available.  There is a liturgical aid to incorporate Poverty Awareness Month into the liturgy. All of these resources are also in Spanish.  You can also sign up to have the daily reflections emailed to you during Poverty Awareness Month.

January is also Human Trafficking Prevention month.  Described as modern day slavery, human trafficking traps more than 20 million people around the world in forced economic and sexual enslavement.  Read more about it here and here.

Click here for more.

 

In the Coming Weeks

Congressional leaders are meeting with White House staffers to start dealing with the threat of a Federal government shut-down on January 19.  It appears the President will push for funding for a wall on the Mexican border while the Democrats may push for relief for Dreamers.  Nothing is clear, as the position of both parties tend to vary almost on an hourly basis.  Next week, we’ll profile three outstanding California Dreamers as part of National Migration Week.  In the meantime, examine the Bishops’ teachings on our Immigration page and urge your Federal representatives to support DACA recipients.

Next week, Governor Jerry Brown will reveal his budget proposal for 2019-20.  Government budgets are “moral documents” since they lay out the public policy priorities for the jurisdiction in question.  During the Great Recession, the California Bishops detailed the framework such documents should face.  Read In Search of the Common Good to prepare for the Governor’s announcement.

January 5, 2018
Vol. 11, No. 1

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/insights-medicinal-abortion-bill-returns-marijuana-legalized

Mid-Session Legislative Wrap Up

The Pennsylvania General Assembly is taking a mid-session break and will resume session late in January 2018. 2017 was a very busy year and more issues are on the horizon for 2018. Here is the status of the several high priority bills that are on the legislative agenda of the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference.

Bills That Made It Through

Several bills made it all the way through the legislative process in 2017. One bright spot in the difficult, prolonged budget debate was a $10 million expansion of Educational Improvement Tax Credits (EITC) which will benefit more students in Catholic schools.

The Pennsylvania General Assembly took a strong pro-life stand to ban barbaric dismemberment abortions and abortions when the unborn baby is able to feel pain (20 weeks). Both the Senate and the House passed Senate Bill 3 with overwhelming majorities. Unfortunately, Governor Tom Wolf vetoed the measure and there was no vote to override.

Governor Wolf did however sign House Bill 1139 into law. This law adds fire stations to the list of safe places where a newborn baby may be placed without penalty. Police stations and hospitals are also safe havens. Incubators will be placed in participating locations to hopefully prevent babies being abandoned in dumpsters or public restrooms.

The legislature reauthorized the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), but not without controversy. An amendment to correct regulations that allow coverage for sex reassignment surgeries for children was taken out of the final bill that went to the governor’s desk. The Pennsylvania Catholic Health Association and PCC will look for ways to address this again without compromising a valuable program that has given thousands of children access to health care.

Legislation to address the statewide opioid crisis was signed into law by Governor Tom Wolf. Senate Bill 446 establishes state-regulated minimum quality standards for the licensure of recovery houses that receive funding or referrals from government agencies. This new law is welcomed by the recovery houses operated by many Catholic Charities agencies within Pennsylvania’s Catholic dioceses.

The governor also signed the “Right to Try” Act into law which will provide terminally ill patients the opportunity to try experimental treatments, such as investigatory drugs, biological products and medical devices. It will allow access to treatments that have not been fully approved by U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Issues Left To Do

There is much more work left to do in 2018. Legislation to create Education Savings Accounts (ESA) is being considered. Senate Bill 2 would give families that live in the boundaries of a chronically underperforming school a grant in the amount of the average state funding per pupil if they withdraw their students from public school. The money could only be used for tuition and expenses in a participating private school, for tutors, or other education expenses. The money would come out of the local school’s state subsidy; any unused dollars would return to the local school.

Senate Resolution 174 and House Resolution 609 each condemn the practice of selectively aborting babies with Down syndrome. Although resolutions do not have the force of law, they are useful gestures for raising awareness. Another resolution, HR 519, condemns the free availability of pornography because of the public health hazard it causes to children and families across the Commonwealth. It passed the House Health Committee in November and should be taken up on the House floor soon.

The Pennsylvania Catholic Health Association is reviewing legislation that would govern the use of POLST, Physician’s Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment. Senate Bill 623 and House Bill 1196 similarly outline how and when someone would use a POLST in an end-of-life situation. The concern lies in whether or not a qualifying condition must be present for a POLST order to be signed.

Beyond these moral issues, the PCC is tracking legislation that tackles social justice concerns as well. House Bill 1076 would create a land bank of blighted properties and transform them into safe housing for the homeless. With opioid addiction continuing its terrible toll on every community, more legislation will be considered including House Bill 825. This bill provides for a central registry of existing emergency drug and alcohol detoxification beds so health care facilities can better serve people with a substance abuse crisis.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of public policy issues that the Catholic Conference will review and advocate. Sexual orientation non-discrimination, access to health care, threats to religious liberty, and other proposals are all potential issues on the radar. For a list of the PCC’s positions on specific legislative proposals, log on and check out: www.pacatholic.org/legislative-review.

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/mid-session-legislative-wrap-up/