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Protection of Conscience Project
Service, not Servitude

Service, not Servitude
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2023 Missouri Revised Statutes | Title XII - Public Health and Welfare | Chapter 188 - Regulation of Abortions


Section 188.105 - Discrimination by employer prohibited because of failure of employee to participate in abortion — exceptions.

1. It shall be unlawful:

(1) For an employer:

(a) To fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to his or her compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual's refusal to participate in abortion;

(b) To limit, segregate, or classify his, her, or its employees or applicants for employment in any way which would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect his or her status as an employee, because of such individual's refusal to participate in abortion;

(c) To discharge, expel, or otherwise discriminate against any person because he or she has opposed any practices forbidden under sections 188.100 to 188.120 or because he or she has filed a complaint, testified, or assisted in any legal proceeding under sections 188.100 to 188.120;

(2) For any person, whether an employer or employee, or not, to aid, abet, incite, compel, or coerce the doing of any of the acts forbidden under sections 188.100 to 188.120, or to attempt to do so.

2. Notwithstanding any other provision of sections 188.100 to 188.120, the acts proscribed in subsection 1 of this section shall not be unlawful if there can be demonstrated an inability to reasonably accommodate an individual's refusal to participate in abortion without undue hardship on the conduct of that particular business or enterprise, or in those certain instances where participation in abortion is a bona fide occupational qualification reasonably necessary to the normal operation of that particular business or enterprise.

3. Nothing contained in sections 188.100 to 188.120 shall be interpreted to require any employer to grant preferential treatment to any individual because of such individual's refusal to participate in abortion.

188.110. Discrimination by colleges, universities and hospitals prohibited — no requirement to pay fees, when

1. No public or private college, university or hospital shall discriminate against any person for refusal to participate in abortion.

2. No applicant, student, teacher, or employee of any school shall be required to pay any fees that would in whole or in part fund an abortion for any other applicant, student, teacher, or employee of that school, if the individual required to pay the fee gives written notice to the proper school authorities that it would be in violation of his or her conscience or beliefs to pay for or fund abortions. The school may require the individual to pay that part of the fees not funding abortions, if the school makes reasonable precautions and gives reasonable assurance that the fees that are paid are segregated from any fund for the payment of abortions.

188.120. Cause of action for violation of discrimination laws, treble damages, attorney's fees.

Any individual injured by any person, association, corporation, or entity by reason of any action prohibited by sections 188.100 to 188.120, as now or hereafter amended, may commence a civil cause of action against the person, association, corporation, or entity who caused the injury, and shall recover treble damages, including pain and suffering, sustained by such individual, the costs of the suit and reasonable attorney's fees.

Note: Definitions

[MO Rev Stat § 188.015 (2023)]

188.015. Definitions. — As used in this chapter, the following terms mean:

(1) "Abortion":

(a) The act of using or prescribing any instrument, device, medicine, drug, or any other means or substance with the intent to destroy the life of an embryo or fetus in his or her mother's womb; or

(b) The intentional termination of the pregnancy of a mother by using or prescribing any instrument, device, medicine, drug, or other means or substance with an intention other than to increase the probability of a live birth or to remove a dead unborn child;

(2) "Abortion facility", a clinic, physician's office, or any other place or facility in which abortions are performed or induced other than a hospital;

(3) "Conception", the fertilization of the ovum of a female by a sperm of a male;

(4) "Department", the department of health and senior services;

(5) "Down Syndrome", the same meaning as defined in section 191.923;

(6) "Gestational age", length of pregnancy as measured from the first day of the woman's last menstrual period;

(7) "Medical emergency", a condition which, based on reasonable medical judgment, so complicates the medical condition of a pregnant woman as to necessitate the immediate abortion of her pregnancy to avert the death of the pregnant woman or for which a delay will create a serious risk of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function of the pregnant woman;

(8) "Physician", any person licensed to practice medicine in this state by the state board of registration for the healing arts;

(9) "Reasonable medical judgment", a medical judgment that would be made by a reasonably prudent physician, knowledgeable about the case and the treatment possibilities with respect to the medical conditions involved;

(10) "Unborn child", the offspring of human beings from the moment of conception until birth and at every stage of its biological development, including the human conceptus, zygote, morula, blastocyst, embryo, and fetus;

(11) "Viability" or "viable", that stage of fetal development when the life of the unborn child may be continued indefinitely outside the womb by natural or artificial life-supportive systems;

(12) "Viable pregnancy" or "viable intrauterine pregnancy", in the first trimester of pregnancy, an intrauterine pregnancy that can potentially result in a liveborn baby.

[MO Rev Stat § 188.100 (2023)]

188.100. Definitions. — Unless the language or context clearly indicates a different meaning is intended, the following words or phrases for the purposes of sections 188.100 to 188.120 shall mean:

(1) "Employer", the state, or any political or civil subdivision thereof, or any person employing two or more persons within the state, and any person acting as an agent of the employer;

(2) "Participate in abortion", to perform, assist in, refer for, promote, procure, or counsel a woman to have an abortion not necessary to save the life of the mother; or to undergo an abortion;

(3) "Person" includes one or more individuals, partnerships, associations, organizations, corporations, legal representatives, trustees, trustees in bankruptcy, receivers, or other organized groups of persons.