Calling access to healthcare a moral and spiritual imperative, Los Angeles faith leaders held a religious service and launched a phone bank Friday to urge congressional leaders to include illegal immigrants in any healthcare reform plan.
“If we were politicians, this would be definitely political suicide to come out for healthcare reform for those who are undocumented,” said Father Roland Lozano, pastor of Our Lady Queen of Angels Catholic Church, known as La Placita, near Olvera Street. “But we’re doing it because we believe ... it’s what God wants us to do.”
Father Richard Estrada, who heads an immigrant services organization known as Jovenes Inc., said inclusion of all immigrants was consistent with biblical teachings that all people are children of God who must care for society’s most vulnerable.
And the Rev. Will Wauters, vicar of the Church of the Epiphany, an Episcopal church in Lincoln Heights, said inclusion of all immigrants would benefit the proposed health insurance marketplace by expanding it with those who numerous studies have shown are younger and healthier than native-born Americans.