D.C. Archdiocese to Cut Spousal Health Care

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The gay marriage law that is expected to take effect this week is forcing the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. to change its health care policy.

From now on, employees of Catholic Charities will not be allowed to add spouses to their coverage when they get married.

Catholic Charities provides services including substance abuse treatment programs and shelters, and employs about 850 people.

"We looked at all the options and implications," the charity's president, Edward J. Orzechowski told The Washington Post. "This allows us to continue providing services, comply with the city's new requirements and remain faithful to the church's teaching."

Susan Gibbs, a spokesman for the archdiocese said the change is necessary so it won't be forced to provide coverage to same-sex spouses. The change won't affect those already covered.

"We do not anticipate any further changes whatsoever," Orzechowski said. "Taking the action we have on foster care and spousal we feel has addressed everything the new law requires of us."

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