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Companies can't use religion as grounds to avoid contraception coverage

Creative Commons
Plan B, also known as the 'morning after pill,' is a form of contraception.

A federal appeals court ruled against a southeastern Michigan natural foods company that claims it should be exempt from the contraception provision in the federal health care law. The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its opinion today.

The Affordable Care Act requires employers to provide workers with insurance that covers contraception.

Eden Foods president Michael Potter challenged that provision on religious grounds. He says his "deeply held religious beliefs" prevent him from supporting contraception and abortion. But the court says Eden Foods is a secular, for-profit corporation. It says the corporation can't "establish that it can exercise religion."

Eden Foods is one of several businesses across the country challenging the provision. Earlier this week a Christian university in West Michigan joined with another college to file a similar lawsuit in Iowa.

Lindsey Smith is a Peabody Award-winning journalist currently leading the station's Amplify Team. She previously served as Michigan Public's Morning News Editor, Investigative Reporter and West Michigan Reporter.
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