Washington, D.C. – American Principles Project has announced that it is endorsing H.R. 1881, the Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act, introduced by Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Pennsylvania). The bill prohibits the federal government — or any state or local government that receives money for child welfare service programs — from discriminating against child welfare service providers that decline to provide, facilitate, or refer for a child welfare service that conflicts with the provider’s sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions.

In light of recent Supreme Court cases, Anna Anderson, Director of Family Policy at American Principles Project, said the legislation has become even more important:

“In recent months, and now just this week in the NIFLA case, the Supreme Court has issued several decisions that rebuke the government for discriminating against people of faith. Must the Court keep reiterating what it has already said loud and clear – that religious freedom is not confined to a worship service?

“Those who care about American families are now calling on Congress to step up and protect their rights, as well as the right of religious people to do good for their communities. The Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act is an important piece of legislation that allows religious adoption agencies to serve families and orphans just as they always have. These agencies have been shut down by the government in several states already, displacing hundreds of foster children and stopping the agencies from recruiting new adoptive families.

“The Supreme Court has pointed the way, and now it’s time for Congress to take action.”

Jon Schweppe, Director of Government Affairs at American Principles Project, said the Child Welfare Provider Inclusion Act is gaining steam:

“This is now a bipartisan bill with 89 cosponsors. Eight new cosponsors have signed on to the legislation in June alone, with more to come. Momentum is building as Americans learn that these faith-based institutions are under attack and in some cases being forced to shut down.

“Protecting religious adoption agencies, which help thousands of birth mothers place their children with loving families, and faith-based child welfare providers, which provide critical services to women and children during their time of need, is a no-brainer. We encourage the House of Representatives to pass this important bill into law.”

To schedule an interview with Jon Schweppe or Anna Anderson, contact Paul Dupont at (o) 202-503-2010 or pdupont@americanprinciplesproject.org.

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