VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 2/23/12)—American Baptist Home Mission Societies (ABHMS) joined more than 60 national, state and local organizations on Friday, Feb.17, in filing an “amicus” (“friend of the court”) brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of Medicaid expansions in the Affordable Care Act. The brief argues that these expansions more completely address the original intent of Medicaid—to fulfill the moral imperative to assist those who are poor and sick.
“It is critical that the faith community engage in justice-advocacy efforts such as these,” says Dr. Aidsand F. Wright-Riggins III, ABHMS executive director. “The best measurement of any society is how it addresses the needs of its poor, its sick, its children and its elderly. American Baptist Home Mission Societies will always stand with those in our world who are most vulnerable because that’s where Jesus calls us to stand.”
The amicus brief submitted by Faithful Reform in Health Care and the Washington Interreligious Staff Community Health Care Working Group represents national, state and local organizations that characterize our country’s religious diversity.
While these groups hold different perspectives on many issues, they all agree that it is the calling of government to bring justice and protection to the poor and the sick—a goal that is consistent with the U.S. Constitution. Therefore, they have long supported Medicaid, our nation’s program for health care for the poor. The brief argues that the Affordable Care Act does not force states to continue to participate in Medicaid. Rather, states must continue to participate in Medicaid and, indeed, expand their programs because it is right and moral.
ABHMS—the domestic mission arm of American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA)—ministers as the caring heart and serving hands of Jesus Christ across the United States and Puerto Rico through a multitude of initiatives that focus on discipleship, community and justice.
American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with 5,500 local congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.