AVE MARIA, Fla.- A national controversy over contraception is hitting home in Southwest Florida.
"You talk about religious intolerance, this is about as bad as it gets," Ave Maria University President Jim Towey said.
A new provision under President Obama's Affordable Health Care Act will require most church-affiliated employers to blanket free birth control under their health insurance plans.
Ave Maria University is just one of the institutions forced to change their coverage.
"We certainly understand universities that was to provide contraceptive services. People can disagree on that issue. But nobody should be obliged to violate it's moral principles and conscience," Towey said Monday.
The Diocese of Venice already responding to the controversy.
"The administration has cast aside the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, denying to Catholics our nation's first and most fundamental freedom, that of religious liberty," Bishop Frank Dewane said in a prepared statement.
Planned Parenthood of Collier County is applauding the mandate.
"These organizations that might be upset are not responsible for encouraging birth control use, or making sure that their employees are coming home with birth control prescriptions. This is completely up to the woman, to her health, and her providers," said Sara Vitale of Planned Parenthood.
Catholic employers have until August to change coverage plans to abide by the new regulations. As time dwindles, Ave Maria University's President says he's facing some tough decisions.
"I just think it's wrong and we're going to fight it. And if it means that we may have to drop our health insurance, we may have to do that," Towey said.
Senator Marco Rubio of has already drafted a bill calling on an Amendment to the Affordable Healthcare Act to protect religious organizations.
Representatives from Ave Maria University also say they'll pursue litigation against the federal government, if necessary.