Ohio's largest county has decided to expand health care benefit access for gay county employees to include their partners' children.
The Plain Dealer newspaper in Cleveland reports the Cuyahoga (ky-uh-HOH'-guh) County Council voted 6-4 to approve the change Tuesday.
The county doesn't give the same benefits to the children of unmarried heterosexual couples. Council members noted that heterosexual couples could wed to get benefits for their children, but gay couples didn't have that option.
Catholic leaders in Ohio are joining the chorus of church officials urging parishioners to protest and pray about the federal government's decision to require many church-affiliated institutions to cover free birth control for employees.
Bishops in Cincinnati, Cleveland and Toledo shared their opposition in letters distributed or read to parishioners this weekend, saying the decision runs counter to their beliefs.