Religious leaders address family planning

WESTPORT — The Religious Institute this week announced the release of a joint statement in an op-ed piece in the Washington Post's On Faith column by the Rev. Richard Cizik and Rev. Debra W. Haffner that speaks out in favor of family planning, and against the House of Representatives' proposed cuts to basic health services.

"Both of us are committed to helping create a just and equitable world where no woman will die giving birth to the next generation," said Haffner, executive director of the Religious Institute. "I am delighted to be joined by a leading evangelical religious leader in supporting family planning services here in America and overseas. Although we hold differing moral values about abortion, we share a commitment that because life is sacred, it should never be created carelessly or unintentionally."


"Evangelicals need to seriously consider the merits of family planning, and see these federal programs as pro-life," said Cizik, co-founder of The New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good. "The victims of defunding these programs are the poorest of the poor, here and around the globe, whom we say as Evangelicals we care about. This is what being 'pro-life' is all about."

The Religious Institute, based in Westport, is a nonprofit, multifaith organization dedicated to advocating for sexual health, education and justice in faith communities and society. More than 5,200 clergy, seminary presidents and deans, religious scholars and other religious leaders representing more than 70 faith traditions are part of the Religious Institute's national network.

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