Supreme Court rules on birth control; Hawaii companies weigh in

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 that some companies should not have to pay for birth control for employees under Obamacare because of religious objections.

The CEO of Planned Parenthood of Hawaii is deeply disappointed.

"Now bosses in hawaii will be able to interfere with their employees access to birth control, which we consider to be just a primary basic healthcare," Andrea Anderson said.

But the owner of a Christian based company in Mililani said he is very pleased.

"I don't think that this is something that any employer should ever have to cover." said Sam Curtis of Showers of Blessing Christian Bookstore.

The high court ruled on a case of a family that owns the mainland based craft chain Hobby Lobby. The majority of justices said the contraceptive mandate infringed on the owner's exercise of religion and could create a substantial tax burden.

"It's not a license to discriminate," said Bill Hoshijo, executive director of the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission.

He foresees some owners of companies in Hawaii citing the court's opinion that's based on the 1993 Religious Freedom of Restoration Act.

"There will be employers trying to assert RFRA religious freedom rights under this decision," he said.

Anderson said the ruling affects more than fertility issues. Birth control pills are also used to treat endometriosis and other health problems.

"Government has now allowed corporations to interfere in whether or not those basic health care things should be covered," she said.

Curtis said his rights and business would have been at risk had the court ruled in favor of covering birth control.

"If it ever comes down to being forced to provide something like that, I don't know if we could keep our doors open," he said.

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