FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Lansing, Mich.) — On Friday, November 1, 2019, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services proposed a rule change that will ensure faith-based adoption and foster care agencies are neither discriminated against nor excluded from federal funding due to their religious mission. The proposed rule change reconsiders a 2016 rule that penalized faith-based entities for adhering to their religious teaching and placing children with a married mother and father.
The following comments may be attributed to David Maluchnik, Michigan Catholic Conference Vice President for Communications:
“The proposed federal rule change, while unfortunately not preventing states and local governments from continuing to discriminate against faith-based agencies, will help to ensure diversity in child placement by preventing discrimination from the federal government. At the expense of vulnerable children and their well-being, too many Catholic child placement agencies nationwide have been forced to close due to discrimination or animus. We therefore view this as a good first step in protecting faith-based agencies across the country.
“While some public officials in Michigan are seeking to shutter faith-based agencies in this state, we welcome the proposed federal rule change that will help to preserve the mission, identity and long-standing community presence of Catholic adoption and foster care agencies in the United States.
“In the not-too-distant past the state of Michigan had relied heavily on partnering with religious communities to place children in forever homes; it is time for the state to return to its well-intentioned past, move on from its current discriminatory efforts, and set the cultural battles aside so that faith-based agencies can continue the important work of placing children.”
Michigan Catholic Conference is the official public policy voice of the Catholic Church in this state.
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