The Franciscan University of Steubenville has announced it will drop health insurance coverage for students because the cost of the plan is expected to double under Obamacare. The university also took issue with a federal mandate that their insurance plan provide free birth control.
The small Catholic school in Ohio posted a statement on their website stating they “will not participate in a plan that requires us to violate the consistent teachings of the Catholic Church on the sacredness of human life.”
The university told Fox News that in addition to dropping its student insurance coverage, it will no longer require students to carry insurance. The university said it would maintain their current health insurance coverage for employees.
”This is putting people in a position where they are having to choose between their faith and their morality — and now an unjust cost,” said Mike Hernon, vice president of advancement. “These sorts of regulations from the government are forcing our hand in a way that’s really wrong.”
Hernon said students must have insurance – either through their parent’s policy or through the university’s basic plan. The plan currently costs approximately $600 per year. However, Hernon said their health care provider informed them that under Obamacare, the policy would double in price to $1,200 and the following year it would triple.
“We couldn’t believe the price (increase),” he told Fox News. “We had them go back and reconfirm it. They said it was dictated by coverage limits that were released by the Obama administration.”
“At the end of the day, it’s the students who are hurt by this,” he said.
Hernon said the university had no control over the costs and would still maintain a health clinic on campus that did not require health insurance.
He said it was a difficult decision for the university -but they could not, in good conscience, offer a plant that would not only violate religious freedom but double and even triple the costs for students.
“It’s harming our students,” he said. “Obamacare is forcing these sorts of costs and immoral options on our students.