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Insights: Bill Targeting Religious Employers; World Refugee Day

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June 23, 2017

Bill Aiming to Discriminate against Religious Employers

The California Catholic Conference (CCC) is continuing to strongly oppose AB 569 (Gonzales Fletcher, D-San Diego), the bill that unfairly targets churches and other religious employers. The bill is being marketed as protection for equality and fairness in the workplace, but in reality it looks to restrict religious organizations from enforcing employee codes of conducts and adverse actions for breach of such contracts.

Though the bill underwent various amendments, it continues to conflict with First Amendment rights of religious freedom and association, which protect the employer’s ability to infuse the policies with the tenets of its particular faith. It now has language that would likely create years of expensive litigation challenging its validity.

AB 569 also retained language that seems to openly invite lawsuits by employees, even going as far as allowing dependents of employees to sue, creating a type of “third-party” claim that doesn’t seem to exist anywhere else in California law.

Please help the CCC by quickly writing a letter to your elected official or tweeting asking them to vote no to this bill. It is a solution in search of problem that does not exist, and its consequences could prove enormously detrimental for religious freedom in California.


Tweet Your Elected Officials

Do you have a Twitter account?  Do you want to use one of the most engaging advocacy tools available today?

The California Catholic Conference is testing a new way for you to quickly engage your elected officials.  Social media is taking on an increasing importance in today’s policy world and Twitter is one of the quickest ways to engage your elected officials and get their attention fast. 

We have two new alerts available for you to try today.  You must have a Twitter account to use them.  (It’s free to sign up.)  Give it a try and let us know what you think:

·      No on AB 569 – NARAL Leads another Attack on Religious Employers

·      Tell Gov. Brown Not to Pay for Doctor-Assisted Suicide

Both alerts also have email versions available.  You can find them and all current alerts on our Action Alert page.

You can also re-post alerts on and articles from our website on Facebook.  Just look for the icon on any alert or page you visit.



Take Action on These Important Alerts NOW

Stop California from Paying for Assisted Suicide

California officials still have not yet reported how many people have tried to use the physician-assisted suicide (PAS) law but already the Department of Health and Human Services is trying to increase funding so that more Medi-Cal recipients will have access to lethal drug prescriptions.


Urge Gov. Brown to Stop Abortion Funding in State Budget

A California Supreme Court case requires your tax dollars to pay for abortion. You have no "choice." Lawmakers repeatedly gloss over the opportunity to debate the issue or, at the least, look for ways to reduce the number of abortions.


Oppose Bill Targeting Your Church and all Religious Employers

AB 569 (Gonzalez-Fletcher, D- San Diego) targets religious employers who expect faithful public and workplace conduct by their employees, including those who teach at religious schools and are reasonably expected to model the principles of that faith. As it is currently written, the California Catholic Conference strongly opposes AB 569.


Catholics Celebrate World Refugee Day

In 2016, more than 65 million people around the world were forced to flee their homes because of conflict, poverty and violence. There are more refugees and internally displaced people now than at any other time in history. Church teaching encourages us to welcome foreigners seeking the security and livelihoods they cannot find in their home countries.

This year’s World Refugee Day took place this week, commemorated by the Vatican, arch/dioceses and others around the world. This video, produced Catholic Relief Services and featuring Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, and Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles, describes Catholic teaching and commitment to assisting refugees around the world.

To learn more and find ways to get involved with World Refugee Day, visit Catholic Relief Services. Please join us in praying and reaching out to those who are displaced and some of our most vulnerable brothers and sisters in Christ.


Protecting Children from Legalized Marijuana

Next week, recreational marijuana use will become legal in Nevada and on January 1, 2018 California will trod the same uncertain path.

Among the many concerns about this new future, the potential impact on children is one that both sides of the debate have addressed.  Unfortunately, the experience of Colorado and Washington - states that recently legalized recreational marijuana - shows that the safeguards built into the new law are not enough to protect children. 

In Colorado, for instance, cannabis-related emergency room visits for toddlers shot up by 200 percent and calls to poison hotlines jumped 500 percent. (Source: JAMA Pediatrics journal.)   As any parent can tell you: toddlers will place “anything” in their mouths; young children want to eat the same things as mom and dad; and teenagers try things they shouldn’t so they can be as cool as their friend.

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Public Policy Insights will break next week for the 4th of July holiday and will return July 7. May God Bless the United States of America and its people.

June 23, 2017
Vol. 10, No. 22

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