On June 1, 2011 LGBT people in Illinois will be allowed to enter into Civil Unions. How will Catholic entities respond to the New Civil Unions Bill? This bill not only affects the adoption of children, but also employee benefits packages. The answer to that is somewhere between pragmatic/creative and dogmatic.
The Illinois Catholic Health Association, which includes Catholic Hospitals and other health care institutions in Illinois sent a memo to its members on May 9 suggesting that they offer “employee plus one” benefit packages instead of “employee and spouse” benefit packages starting on June 1, 2011.
This would allow the employee the opportunity to buy into a benefits package that would provide health coverage for themselves and one other person living with them. “This person could be a sibling, relative, etc. the exact relationship would not need to be disclosed,” wote Patrick Cacchione, the Health Associations Executive Director.
One wonders why this type of creativity is not also expressed in the arena of adoption. Why do the Illinois Catholic Conference side with the Illinois Catholic Health Association when it makes adjustments for the new civil unions law, and yet they refuse the same with adoption with Illinois Catholic Charities. The Illinois Catholic Bishops appear to speak out of both sides of their mouth.
Clearly the Illinois Catholic Health Associate sees costly legal issues if they don’t make adjustments for the Civil Unions Law down the road. The same analysis can be applied to Catholic Charities.
The Rainbow Sash Movement prays the Illinois Catholic Conference will remove the log of homophobia from its eye before trying to judge LGBT couples as harming children when they adopt them.
If you want to do something about this hypocrisy in the Catholic Church than stand with us on June 12, 2011, 11AM Mass, Pentecost Sunday, at Holy Name Cathedral, and be visible in the name of the People of God.