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Birth control coverage at stake in SCOTUS religious freedom case

Media Contact

Rachel Rhodes

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments this week in the Little Sisters of the Poor v. Pennsylvania case, which addresses the question of if employers are allowed to deny employees insurance coverage of birth control on the grounds of religious objection.


Nelson Tebbe

Professor of Law

Nelson Tebbe, professor of law at Cornell Law School, is an expert on constitutional law and religion and author of the book “Religious Freedom in an Egalitarian Age.” He says that the outcome of the Little Sisters v. Pennsylvania case could impact many thousands of women.

Tebbe says:

“The main issue in Little Sisters v. Pennsylvania is whether the Trump administration has the authority to exempt religious nonprofits from the contraception mandate enacted under Obamacare, even though the administration’s exemption would completely deprive female employees of cost-free contraception coverage.

“The administration is arguing that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act gives it that authority. But the Little Sisters and other religious nonprofits are already exempted under existing regulations, which do provide alternate coverage for employees. Altogether, this case will affect many thousands of women.


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