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Supreme Court Ruling: Employers Can Refuse to Pay for Birth Control

Jun 30, 2014, 11:44 am EDT

In a 5-4 decision handed down on Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of a company that objected to paying for workers’ birth control under an Affordable Care Act mandate. Source: Flickr

Hobby Lobby, owned by a Christian family, argued that forcing it to pay for birth control under employee health insurance infringed on its religious rights. The court’s conservative justices agreed, finding that closely-held companies like Hobby Lobby would have their free exercise of religion mitigated by the law, USA TODAY notes.

However, the majority limited the scope of its ruling to companies owned by a small group of people, like Hobby Lobby. The majority also noted that the Obama administration has already created a work-around to provide contraceptive coverage to women who work for religious non-profits, under which insurers pay for the birth control. Read 

IKEA to Raise Minimum Wage to $10.76 in All US Stores

Jun 26, 2014, 12:02 pm EDT

Furniture retailer IKEA plans to boost the minimum wage it pays its workers in the U.S.

IKEA currently pays a minimum wage of $9.17 per hour to workers in the 38 stores it operates in the U.S, substantially higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. IKEA will raise its minimum wage to $10.76 an hour, USA TODAY notes.

An IKEA executive says the retailer is hiking its minimum wage because it wants to “create a better everyday life for our coworkers.” Read 

Supreme Court: Cellphone Searches Illegal Without Warrant

Jun 25, 2014, 4:44 pm EDT

The Supreme Court, ruled on Wednesday, that it’s illegal for police to search a person’s cellphone without a warrant.

The Supreme Court justices came to a unanimous decision regarding cellphones needing a warrant to be searched. The justices stated that a cellphone was much more than a simple social convenience and that it could hold private information, reports the Associated Press.

However, this doesn’t mean that police can’t still confiscate a cellphone. According to the Supreme Court’s ruling, police can choose to take cellphones, but will still require a warrant to look through them. To protect the cellphones from remote encryption, they can place them in a bag that blocks signal. Police can also choose to take the battery out of the cellphone, the Associated Press notes. Read 

Indiana Judge Ends State Ban on Gay Marriage

Jun 25, 2014, 2:37 pm EDT

Indiana just became the latest state to lift its ban on gay marriage.

U.S. District Judge Richard Young issued a ruling that allows same-sex couple to get married.”Same-sex couples, who would otherwise qualify to marry in Indiana, have the right to marry in Indiana,” he wrote.

“These couples, when gender and sexual orientation are taken away, are in all respects like the family down the street,” Young added. “The Constitution demands that we treat them as such.” Read 

Why John Boehner Plans to Sue President Obama

Jun 25, 2014, 2:20 pm EDT

John Boehner is planning to file a lawsuit against President Obama, claiming that the president has abused his executive powers.

The House Speaker says that Obama has ignored the laws and brags about it. John Boehner claims that the lawsuit has nothing to do with attempting to impeach the president — “it’s about him faithfully executing the laws of this country.”

“My view is the president has not faithfully executed the laws,” he said. “What we have seen clearly over the last five years is an effort to erode the power of the Legislative Branch.” Read 

FBI Rescues 168 Kids in Sex-Trafficking Operation

Jun 24, 2014, 11:19 am EDT

The FBI cracked down on child sex-trafficking in the U.S. during an operation that took place over the last week.

168 kids have been recovered and 281 pimps have been arrested so far during the crackdown. The operation involved close to 400 law enforcement agencies and it took place in more than 100 U.S. cities.

Over the last six years, operations to stop child sex-trafficking by the FBI and its partners have led to 1,450 convictions and seizure of more than $3 million in assets. The agency has also managed to rescue 3,600 kids over that span. Read 

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