Advocacy

News Releases

Statement on Michigan Supreme Court Juvenile Life Without Parole Decision

In 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Miller vs. Alabama ruled mandatory life without parole sentences for juveniles were unconstitutional. Earlier this year, Michigan lawmakers prohibited the mandatory sentence going forward, but did not address the issue of retroactivity. Today, the Michigan Supreme Court declared that the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision does not apply to those currently serving life without parole for a crime committed as a juvenile. Michigan Catholic Conference issued a statement in response, calling for the Legislature to pass a measure that would allow those serving the sentence the chance for a parole hearing during their lives. “Our position is driven by the need to balance compassion and protection for the victims with the opportunity for offenders to rehabilitate their lives, which should be the goal of the corrections system.” Read more…

Hobby Lobby Decision a Welcome Victory for Conscience Rights

Michigan Catholic Conference made the following statement today after the United States Supreme Court held in the Hobby Lobby case that closely-held corporations cannot be required, under federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act protections, to provide contraceptive coverage in employee health benefit plans: “The impact of the HHS mandate and the administration’s ‘accommodation’ policy, however, still looms large for many Catholic and other religious organizations that do not meet the government test of a ‘religious employer.’ We express hope that non-profit cases related to the HHS mandate, such as that of the Michigan Catholic Conference and Little Sisters of the Poor, secure a favorable outcome from the federal courts in a manner that upholds and protects the first amendment right to religious liberty.” Read more…

Advocacy News

MCC Op/Ed “Immigrant Children Deserve Security and Compassion”

Responding to the humanitarian crisis that is taking place with thousands of unaccompanied children crossing the U.S./Mexico border, MCC President and CEO Paul A. Long composed an opinion article for the Detroit Free Press urging security and compassion for the children. According to the article: “Frustration over failed immigration policy is understandable, but this is not the time to hold children accountable for a failed American border policy or a foreign country’s economic and political problems.” The article also highlights the work that is being undertaken by Catholic Charities and volunteers to assist migrants with food, shelter and medicine. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has also weighed in on the border crisis with a statement urging the administration to reconsider its policy of returning the children without proper due process. Click here to read the full Free Press op/ed article from Michigan Catholic Conference.…

The Word from Lansing Column: The Moral Urgency of Immigration Reform

In light of thousands of unaccompanied minors recently fleeing from areas of extreme poverty and violence to come to the United States, this month’s The Word from Lansing column focuses on the importance of policies that address family reunification and the root causes of migration. While the Catholic Church teaches that the nation has the right to secure its borders and enforce its laws, action must be taken to address a failing immigration system in a comprehensive way and respect the dignity of all human persons, citizen or foreigner. In 2011, the Michigan bishops released a statement on immigration and the guidelines for reform. Read more…

Fortnight For Freedom 2014

For the past two years, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has sponsored the Fortnight for Freedom, a two week period of prayer, education, and action to promote religious freedom. This year's Fortnight for Freedom began on June 21, 2014 and will last until July 4, 2014, which coincides with the celebration of several martyrs important to the Church who remained faithful in the midst of political persecution. The theme of the event is standing up for the freedom to serve the poor and the vulnerable in accordance with Catholic teaching. For prayer resources or further information, visit www.Fortnight4Freedom.org or check out this video about how you can get involved in the Fortnight…

Lansing Update

Lansing Update, July 18, 2014

Catholics Push for Compassion and Security for Migrant Children; U.S. Senate Narrowly Blocks Anti-Religious Liberty Measure; MCC Comments on Last Week’s Juvenile Life Without Parole Ruling; New Video on Charity and Justice Available. Read more…

Lansing Update, June 13, 2014

Budget Process Complete; Legislature Has Recessed for Summer; Increased Funding Allocated for Pregnancy and Parenting Support Program; Department of Human Services Provides One-Time Funding for Center for Hope; Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals Denies MCC Injunction in HHS Case; MCC Applauds Senate Approval of Homestead Tax Credit Legislation; Michigan Senate Approves Updates to Prostitution Statute; Adoption Subsidy Bill Passes Michigan Senate; Senate Judiciary Committee Approves Elder Abuse Bills; Measures Considering E-Cigarettes Continue Forward; MCC Pushes for Stronger Regulations ; New Election Resources Available from MCC. Read more…