Alberta pharmacist vindicated for pro-Life stand

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Mike Mastromatteo

A Calgary pharmacist has reached an agreement with her employer and the Alberta College of Pharmacists that will allow her to refrain from providing customers with prescriptions designed to terminate unborn human life.

Maria Bizecki of the Co-op Pharmacy in Calgary became the subject of an internal review by the Alberta College of Pharmacists last year after she refused to dispense the so-called “morning-after” pill and other products to which she is morally opposed.[Full text]

Testimony of nurse re: Wisconsin Assembly Bill 67

Before Wisconsin Senate Committee on Health, Children, Families, Aging and Long-Term Care

Wisconsin, USA

 Beth LaChance, R.N.

. . . I . . . experienced an onslaught of disciplinary reprimands, retaliation, criticism and
ostracism. . . I was no longer assigned to train or mentor new nurses despite my credentials and  qualifications.  . . .I was denied career advancement to clinical nurse three status, as the  research project which qualified me for advancement, was resigned to another nurse without my prior  knowledge or consent. I was grilled as a “second class nurse” or “nobody”. . .[Full text]

The campaign to force hospitals to provide abortion

United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

Forty-five states and the federal government protect the right of health care providers to
decline involvement in abortion. Pro-abortion  groups seek to abolish these legal protections.

Consider the following:

Abortion Access Project

Operating in twenty-four states, the project’s goal is “increasing access to abortion services by expanding . . . the number of hospitals offering abortion services.” The project admits that its tactics include “pressuring hospitals” and it does so through both political and legal pressure. The “Hospital Access Collaborative” division reports on the state projects’ legal and regulatory interventions challenging mergers. [Full text]

Testimony of pharmacist re: Wisconsin Assembly Bill 63

Before the Assembly Labour Committee

 Susan Grosskreuz, R.Ph.

Although there is an extremely high demand for pharmacists in our state, I have had to be very selective as to where I am willing to work because I cannot go against my conscience. . . Although pharmacy jobs in the retail sector were generally plentiful . . . I accepted a position at a newly created pharmacy . . .that served only nursing home patients. . . . I actually would have preferred working in the retail sector but I didn’t feel I had any protection if I requested to refrain from filling prescriptions that had abortifacient potential. [Full Text]

Testimony of pharmacist re: Wisconsin Senate Bill 21

Before the Senate Labour Committee

 Yvonne Klubertanz R.Ph.

The physician was adamant that I had to fill whatever he prescribed, even though I explained my conscience would not allow me to do that. He threatened that my supervisor would find out about this, and I feared that my job could be in jeopardy. I was harassed for my beliefs, and my dignity as a person was attacked.

Thank you for being here to listen to my testimony in support of SB 21. As a pharmacist licensed in the state of WI, I have experienced first hand the fear of being fired for my religious, moral, or ethical beliefs, and realize how important this bill is for the future of pharmacy. First let me explain the current state of the pharmacy profession.

As you may know, there is a shortage of health care workers. Pharmacists, especially, are in very high demand. If pharmacists are being fired or not allowed equal opportunities because they object to dispensing medications that cause abortions or death of an individual person, we are doing society and our great State of Wisconsin an injustice. [Full text]


Pro-life nurse reaches settlement agreement with Oregon health department over request for religious accommodation, abortion

Rutherford Institute Attorneys, Health Department Agree on Resolution to Implement New Policies

Salem, Ore.— Attorneys for The Rutherford Institute have reached a mutually agreeable resolution with the Marion County Health Department on behalf of Janice Turner, a public health nurse who lost her job with the health department due to her deeply held religious belief that life begins at conception. The settlement agreement provides for the enactment of two new policies.  The first policy guarantees that all clients who receive emergency contraception, a.k.a. “the morning after pill,” will be informed in easily understandable terms that it functions by preventing the implantation of a fertilized ovum if conception has already occurred. The second policy, a general statement of employees’ rights to religious belief and expression within the workplace, prevents discrimination based upon religious or moral beliefs regarding abortion or contraception and requires the health department to accommodate those beliefs.  Patterned after existing Conscience Clause legislation, this policy ensures that employees who refuse to accept job duties that contradict their religious or moral beliefs regarding abortion or contraception can do so without fear of being fired, demoted, transferred or disciplined.

Turner, who worked for the Health Department from 1990 until July 2001, had early on in her employment expressed her religious opposition to abortion and requested accommodation from having to discuss or promote abortion procedures with her patients. According to Turner, her initial supervisor accommodated her religious beliefs and allowed her to refer those patients wanting to receive emergency contraception or information about abortion to another nurse. However, in 1995, a new supervisor was appointed to the Women’s Clinic who declared herself to be pro-choice and allegedly acted in a manner intolerant of other viewpoints. According to Turner, this new supervisor stated her expectation that everyone on staff discuss emergency contraception with patients as “a method of contraception that will prevent a pregnancy” and discouraged the nurses from referencing it as a possible abortifacient.  Turner claims that her supervisor continually reiterated her distaste for Turner’s pro-life views regarding emergency contraception and repeatedly told her that she “was not a complete nurse.”  During Turner’s final evaluation, the supervisor warned Turner that her position could be cut in the department budget, and if Turner wanted another position in the department, she would have to be willing to dispense emergency contraception. Attorneys for The Rutherford Institute filed a complaint in Janice Turner’s behalf last year in U.S. District Court.

“This is a timely issue which brings to light the importance of protecting health care workers’ rights, especially those who have sincerely held religious beliefs regarding abortion,” stated John W. Whitehead, president of The Rutherford Institute.  “It is also heartening to see that women, some of whom may have religious beliefs against taking an abortifacient, will be given complete information regarding the effect of the morning-after pill on a possibly fertilized ovum and its medical implications.”

The Rutherford Institute is an international, nonprofit civil liberties organization committed to defending constitutional and human rights.

Nisha N. Mohammed Ph: (434) 978-3888, ext. 604;
Pager: 800-946-4646, Pin #: 1478257
Email: Nisha N. Mohammed