Setting the story straight

A lot has been said about SB 1439, much of it untrue or misleading. So I want to set the story straight.

The bill, sponsored by Senator Nancy Barto, would protect the conscience rights of health care professionals who object to providing treatment that would lead to the death of a patient.

Health care providers should not be compelled by the government or anyone else to provide treatment that would cause death. Just as a doctor or nurse should not be forced to participate in or provide an abortion, the same legal protection should be afforded regarding medical services that could cause the death of the patient.

While current law provides significant protection for doctors and nurses from being forced to participate in such actions, there’s very little stopping them from being discriminated against for choosing to opt-out. Employees could be reassigned to unfavorable shifts or a medical resident could lose his or her opportunity for training and advancement, among other things.

That is what SB 1439 would address. It would give health care providers civil recourse if they were subject to discrimination for failing to provide treatment that causes death. Put another way, they could bring a lawsuit if necessary to enforce their rights of conscience.

The fear being repeated is that the bill would interfere with patients’ end-of-life wishes as expressed in a living will or advanced directive. Current law, however, already allows health care providers the right to opt-out of end-of-life treatment. In light of that, they shouldn’t then be subject to discrimination in the workplace. That is the issue addressed by SB 1439.

Read the bill here: SB 1439.

 

A Case for living out your faith – how you can help modern-day heroes

On the heels of Barronelle Stutzman’s loss in the Washington Supreme Court, another trampling of religious rights is being played out in the courts in Oregon.

Aaron and Melissa Klein lost their bakery because they refused to comply with the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industry’s demand to violate their religious convictions and make a cake for a same-sex wedding.

They had their day in the Oregon Court of Appeals yesterday where they made their case for the First Amendment right of freedom to exercise their religion. It could be some time before the court issues a ruling.

We are also awaiting big news in a similar case out of Colorado. Jack Phillips was ordered by an administrative law judge to violate his religious beliefs and create cakes for same-sex weddings.

After the Colorado Supreme Court refused to hear Phillips’ case, the baker appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. We should learn very soon whether they agree to hear it.

All of these cases highlight the need for reinforcement of our First Amendment right to exercise our religious beliefs.

Please contact President Trump and ask him to sign an executive order, reportedly already on his desk, that would ensure these long-standing rights.

Click here to contact the president on behalf of religious liberty!

 

Bad Bill of the Week

 

That makes no sense

Senator Quezada introduced a bill that would rescind a longstanding Arizona law regarding the topic of homosexuality in the classroom. If the public school provides instruction on HIV or AIDS, then Arizona law prohibits the school from promoting homosexuality or portraying it as a positive alternative lifestyle. That’s a common-sense law worth keeping. The topic of homosexuality is best reserved for parents to discuss with their children, not learning about it in the classroom.

Read the bill here: SB1225.

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