.- Archbishop Roberto Gonzalez of San Juan, Puerto Rico, has expressed his support of a law that would allow professional health care workers to refuse to perform abortions for reasons of conscience.
The Archdiocese’s delegate for Legislative Affairs, Anibal Colon, addressed the Puerto Rican parliament and explained that the majority of US states include “Protection of Conscience Laws” in their legislation, which are intended to ensure “justice for health care professionals and their collaborators.”
Colon said that according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “direct abortion, that is, desired as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law” and therefore formal cooperation in these abortions is a grave sin, canonically sanctioned by excommunication.
Colon asked that medical students also be covered by the measure.
The proposed law says that “just as all people have to right to believe in something, people also have the right not to believe,’ adding that “in the healthy balance of interests and rights, people should be protected from being obliged to go against their ethical convictions in the exercise of a duty or a profession.”