Catholic Conference presses priorities as state legislators return to Richmond
Two weeks after the Virginia General Assembly returned to Richmond for a special session on the budget, the Virginia Catholic Conference maintains its focus on advocating for budget priorities centered on protecting life and the most vulnerable, throughout all stages of life. So far legislators' actions have been mostly procedural. We expect negotiations to ramp up a few weeks from now. In anticipation of that, the Conference repeats its call to legislators in both chambers and on both sides of the aisle to:
- Cover all and protect all to the extent possible, by ensuring nearly 400,000 low-income Virginians have access to essential health insurance while eliminating funding the state currently provides for abortions on children who may be born with disabilities;
- Remove funding for long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs), which would be promoted to low-income teenagers and women; steer any potential funding away from Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest provider of abortions, and the abortion industry;
- Expand support for low-income elderly and others with disabilities who receive assisted living care at St. Francis Home and similar facilities, by increasing the state's auxiliary grant rate as much as possible;
- Extend transitional services for people moving from government assistance to employment while they are enrolled in post-secondary programs.