Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Not so charitable Catholic Charities bans spousal benefits in DC

As they threatened previously, Catholic Charities is now closing down its foster care and adoption business in Washington, DC, lest they be forced to put children in same sex households (marriage equality becomes the law in the district starting tomorrow). Apparently, however, this is the only activity they will close-- although previously they had threatened to cut off the whole operation.

However, today it was revealed that they will cut benefits for staff
Catholic Charities will continue to honor the health plan coverage that current employees have as of March 1, 2010. As of March 2, a new plan will be in effect that will cover new employees and requests for benefit changes by current employees. The new plan will provide the same level of coverage for employees and their dependents that you now have, with one exception: spouses not in the plan as of March 1 will not be eligible for coverage in the future.....

We sincerely regret that we have to make this change, but it is necessary to allow Catholic Charities to continue to provide essential services to the clients we serve in partnership with the District of Columbia while remaining consistent with the tenets of our religious faith.
Are you clear about this? They will continue to cover anyone who currently has spousal benefits. Including people who are divorced and remarried. But No Fags.

Which is ironic, because apparently they have a lot of gay employees.
Orzechowski said many of the people who work for Catholic Charities and receive its services are from the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, but giving same-sex spousal benefits to staff members or placing adoptive children with gay couples would violate Church tenets.
I wonder how those employees feel now.

Was this the only option? No.
The church faced two options with the approval of the new law, said Robert Tuttle, a George Washington University professor who studies the relationship between church and state. One choice was to expand the definition of domestic partner, as the Archdiocese in San Francisco did years ago, to include a parent, sibling or someone else in the household.

The second choice was to do what the Washington Archdiocese has done: eliminate benefits for all spouses.
Because this is much more dramatic, and pisses off the straights against those Selfish Gays. There is a a certain whiff of --shall we say, inconsistency? --- in the sorrowful crocodile tears of the poor, oppressed Roman Catholic institution, forced to harm the children because of those Selfish Homos. The Lead frames it more considerately than I would:
Another question perhaps worth raising: when is a "religious objection" not really a religious objection, but a political one? Catholic teaching does not recognize re-marriage after divorce without an annulment. Like same-sex couples, the heterosexual couples involved in such relationships are engaging in sex outside of what the church recognizes marriage. Yet the church willingly provides services and benefits to those couples. Why? There is no hierarchy of sinfulness in Catholic theology regarding sex outside of marriage. So why treat gay and lesbian couples differently that twice or thrice married heterosexual couples?

The church is entitled to object to same-sex marriage on whatever grounds it chooses. The rest of us are entitled to point out that the double standard it has constructed on this issue has no basis in its own theology.
More at Gay Married Californian and even more at Streetprophets.


Counterlight said...

Sounds to me like the reasoning of kidnappers. "Do you want to live with the thought that your selfishness forced us to cut up your child into pieces and send him to you in separate bags?"

it's margaret said...

sounds to me like DC ought to cancel its $22 million dollar contract with these thugs....

NancyP said...

Catholic Charities is going to have a harder time hiring and retaining good employees in the social worker type jobs, where health care benefits are usual.

word verification:
close to Maori word for N.Z.