The Catholic University of America’s school of social work is reportedly cutting ties with a group due to its advocacy of abortion.
Will Rainford, who became Dean of the National Catholic School of Social Service (NCSSS) in June of this year, recently announced in an email to students that he was ending relations with the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) because of its position that social workers should support access to abortions for clients, according to the Chronicle of Social Change.
The NASW states in its issues section that social workers should, “assist clients in obtaining whatever help and information they need for effective family planning and for maintaining their reproductive health” including securing funding for abortion services.
The organization’s support of abortion rights doesn’t end with its policy statement either. The NASW co-sponsored a march for “reproductive freedom” on the National Mall in Washington D.C.; it contested political nominations because of the nominee’s pro-life stance; and publicly supported legislation to legalize abortions throughout all nine months of pregnancy, allow post-viability abortions to be performed on an out-patient basis in clinics, allow non-physicians to perform abortions, and possibly eliminate conscience protection of religious hospitals that refuse to perform abortions.
In the email, Rainford informed students, “Such a concrete and public declaration by an institution is completely incongruent with Catholic Tradition and thus renders the organization out of bounds for the school as an institution.”
The NCSSS’s website states, “Social workers attend to the ways human life is attacked, degraded, and discarded. In social work practice, every person is precious, requiring the professional social worker to strive towards enhancing the life and dignity of the human person.”
Patrick Reilly, president of The Cardinal Newman Society, applauded the decisive action, "The Catholic University of America has been setting a wonderful example for the Church's universities." He continued, "By this decision, CUA is embracing the call of Ex corde Ecclesiae to ensure that all policies, actions and commitments are in accord with the university's Catholic identity."
A recent tweet from Rainford reinforces his strong commitment to and understanding of this core principle of Catholicism. He tweeted, “I just don't know how u can be ‘Catholic’ and support abortion. People make up their own religion 2 justify self.”
It has been reported that some graduate students in the NCSSS are protesting Rainford’s decision. They have formed a group called “NCSSS Action,” with the goal of convincing Rainford to allow students and faculty to vote on the matter. To date, it appears this effort has gained very little traction.
The Catholic University of America is recommended by The Cardinal Newman Society in The Newman Guide for its strong Catholic identity.
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