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ACLJ Files Lawsuit Against Illinois Governor Charging Order Requir'g Pharms. to Dispense Meds
American Center for Law & Justice ^ | April 13, 2005

Posted on 04/14/2005 2:31:43 PM PDT by Daisy4

ACLJ Files Lawsuit Against Illinois Governor Charging Order Requiring Pharmacists to Dispense Medication that Violates Religious Beliefs is Unenforceable http://www.aclj.org/news/Read.aspx?ID=1475 April 13, 2005

(Springfield, IL) – The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which specializes in constitutional law, today filed a lawsuit in state court in Illinois on behalf of two pharmacists challenging Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich’s emergency amendment to the state code requiring pharmacists to dispense medication even if filling the prescriptions violate their conscience and religious beliefs. The ACLJ lawsuit charges that the Governor’s order is unenforceable and urges the court to declare it null and void because it violates state law including the Illinois Health Care Right of Conscience Act.

“This directive is not only legally flawed but it puts pharmacists in the untenable position of having to choose between adhering to their religious beliefs and violating a law that could cost them their jobs,” said Francis J. Manion, Senior Counsel of the ACLJ, which is representing the two pharmacists. “There are protections in place to prevent employees from being punished because of their religious beliefs. The Governor’s directive is out of step with state law and we are urging the court to issue an injunction that would block the enforcement of this directive and ultimately declare the Governor’s action null and void.”

The ACLJ today filed suit in the Circuit Court of the Seventh Judicial Circuit in Springfield, Illinois on behalf of Peggy Pace and John Menges, two registered pharmacists who will not dispense the morning-after pill and/or “Plan B” medication because of their religious, moral, and ethical beliefs. Both Pace and Menges believe the drugs are abortion producing medications. Pace is a staff pharmacist at a retail chain in Glen Carbon and Menges works as a staff pharmacist at a retail chain in Collinsville.

The lawsuit contends that the Governor’s emergency amendment is unenforceable because it violates the Illinois Health Care Right of Conscience Act which makes it unlawful for any public official to discriminate or punish any person who refuses to “participate in any way in any particular form of health care services contrary to his or her conscience.”

The suit also charges the emergency amendment violates the Illinois Religious Freedom Restoration Act, the Illinois Human Rights Act, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The suit requests the court grant an injunction preventing the measure from being enforced and asks the court to declare the directive unenforceable and null and void.

“The religious beliefs of those in the health care industry must be protected,” said Manion. “The pro-life pharmacist who chooses not to dispense abortion producing drugs should not face punishment and discrimination for abiding by those convictions.”

The ACLJ, which specializes in pro-life litigation, is defending a national law protecting health care workers from discrimination. The measure, which is being challenged in the federal courts, bars federal funds from going to federal or state programs that discriminate against health care professionals who do not participate in abortion services. The ACLJ represents members of Congress – including Representatives Henry Hyde (R-IL) and Dave Weldon, M.D. (R-FL), the sponsors of the measure.

Led by Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow, the ACLJ specializes in constitutional law and is based in Washington, D.C.

Chicago Tribune - Illinois Birth Control Law Challenged: Pharmacists Seeking Right


TOPICS: Extended News; US: Illinois
KEYWORDS: aclj; blagojevich; conscienceclause; lawsuit; pharmacists

1 posted on 04/14/2005 2:31:43 PM PDT by Daisy4
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To: Daisy4

I don't see how they have a case. If the requirements of the job offend your religious beliefs then don't take the job. If someone works in a bookstore they can't choose to not sell certain kinds of books.


2 posted on 04/14/2005 2:39:01 PM PDT by Borges
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Comment #3 Removed by Moderator

Comment #4 Removed by Moderator

To: Borges

I believe the order forces those who own/operate/manage private pharmacies and chains to sell Birth control as well. That's the argument. To counter your statement, Why does there need to be a law, if the employee refuses the owner can fire them.


5 posted on 04/14/2005 2:44:43 PM PDT by rmichaelj
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To: rmichaelj
What I had in mind was a pharmacist in a store's employ who refused to dispense birth control even though the store carried it. If the Pharmacist is in business for himself there in no law that compels him to carry birth control unless I severely misread this article. Aren't they claiming to have a right to to sell something even if they work for someone else?
6 posted on 04/14/2005 2:47:06 PM PDT by Borges
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To: Borges

The only problem with your statement is that these pharmacists took their jobs with the understanding that they were protected - BY LAW - from having to dispense such things. Only now does Blagojecivh want to try and overrule/overturn that law.

In the absence of that original understanding, the blame would fall on the pharmacist(s) who refuse; in this case, as far as they were concerned, the law permitted this. Now it's the Illinois Dems trying to say "yeah, we know what you agreed to (and understood) when you took the job, but now we're changing the rules so either violate your deeply held religious beliefs or get another job.

I wouldn't sell a child pornography book from a bookstore, regardless of whether or not someone determined it was legal.


7 posted on 04/14/2005 2:47:18 PM PDT by TitansAFC ("It would be a hard government that should tax its people 1/10th part of their income."-Ben Franklin)
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To: Borges

should be 'a right not to sell something'


8 posted on 04/14/2005 2:47:50 PM PDT by Borges
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To: Daisy4

To avoid duplication, please do not change the title of a published article.

In the case where the title is lengthy, please use the beginning words in the original published title and as much of the original title as will fit. Thanks.


9 posted on 04/14/2005 2:52:16 PM PDT by Sidebar Moderator
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To: Borges
I don't see how they have a case. If the requirements of the job offend your religious beliefs then don't take the job. If someone works in a bookstore they can't choose to not sell certain kinds of books.

I think one problem is that the law also applies to pharmacists who own the pharmacy. And if you own the bookstore, you certainly have the right to decide what books to sell.

The flaw in your argument is in comparing the owner of the bookstore to the State, and as of yet, the State does not have ownership of the pharmacies.

10 posted on 04/14/2005 2:53:55 PM PDT by slowhandluke
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To: Daisy4
Chicago Tribune articles must be linked and excerpted only.

Please review Updated FR Excerpt and Link Only or Deny Posting List due to Copyright Complaints before posting any news article, whether posted as a thread or as a post within a thread.

Thank you.

11 posted on 04/14/2005 2:59:40 PM PDT by Sidebar Moderator
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To: Sidebar Moderator

Thank you.


12 posted on 04/14/2005 3:00:03 PM PDT by Daisy4
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To: Sidebar Moderator

I took this from aclj.org. Does that make a difference?


13 posted on 04/14/2005 3:01:23 PM PDT by Daisy4
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To: slowhandluke

"Manion argued that forcing pharmacists to fill prescriptions they believe violate their religious principles not only places those pharmacists in a moral dilemma but also violates the so-called conscience clause that allows those in the medical field to avoid performing procedures, most notably abortion, that they find reprehensible"



A very good point here. Nurses and doctors do not have to participate in a procedure that violates their personal religious convictions such as abortion.


14 posted on 04/14/2005 3:04:07 PM PDT by Daisy4
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To: Daisy4
I took this from aclj.org. Does that make a difference?

Restrictions still apply when items from restricted sources are published on other sites.

15 posted on 04/14/2005 3:07:12 PM PDT by Admin Moderator
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To: Borges; organdonor
You sick pups. How far have we gone down the slippery slope that you believe that anyone who by there very conscience can't be part of murdering abortion's- has no right to be a pharmacist. I keep seeing comments like yours all over FR, and I for one think this place has become infested with People who will prevent anyone else on FR from ever doing anything good. It makes me sick of being a human being when I see how many of you there are in world today. And I realize you don't have the moral capacity to understand a word I am saying. I guess it is just too late to do anything except watch the world go to hell. I normally just pass this crap over knowing that the reply it deserves will only cause me trouble, but I have reached the limit on this crap. I think many good people must be extremely demoralized by how you get away with spreading filth all over the place and not even getting called for it. And when I see two or three of you in a row show up with the same crap- then I wonder if DU has a portal that leads straight to FR. The FR I signed onto years ago would have fought your sick ideas tooth and nail. But you have all done your duty and worn everyone down by hitting in mass at every thread on a subject until people get tired of fighting you. You twist all the principles and traditions that this country was founded on until no one can recognize it, and causing it to fall. You don't believe in Evil, but I do...because I am looking at it. Now if it is my time to go. Then so be it. Just watching this place get worn down with dark ideas by people who despise God, is not doing me any good anyways.
16 posted on 04/14/2005 3:12:54 PM PDT by Revel
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To: Borges

I think the law is broader than that and apples across the board to all pharmacists/pharmacies. Again, though why does the state need to be involved if individual managers and owners can decide to fire people who refuse to sell products in their store?


17 posted on 04/14/2005 3:14:43 PM PDT by rmichaelj
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To: Borges

I don't see how they have a case. If the requirements of the job offend your religious beliefs then don't take the job. If someone works in a bookstore they can't choose to not sell certain kinds of books.



You're comparing apples to oranges.



18 posted on 04/14/2005 3:25:53 PM PDT by Daisy4
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To: organdonor; Borges
Your position on this issue is very evil. And wrong. So Catholic Hospitals and their pharmacies must distribute poison which kills at least 50% of the people who injest this drug (RU-486)?? Nice position.

Thank God there are decent people fighting the totalitarian democrat party and its Culture of Death.

19 posted on 04/14/2005 3:26:49 PM PDT by FormerACLUmember (Honoring Saint Jude's assistance every day.)
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To: FormerACLUmember
I wasn't referring to Birth Control on the level of RU-486 I was thinking about just normal birth control. The Pill etc.
20 posted on 04/14/2005 3:28:50 PM PDT by Borges
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Comment #21 Removed by Moderator

To: Borges
Actually, a bookstore clerk can refuse to sell a book that he or she feels is inappropriate. He may not last long on the job, but he can refuse.

Private businesses are just that, and its up to the consumer to find a merchant compatible with their needs. The public doesn't have a "right' to a damn thing, except not to be discriminated against because of their race. But even that is a criminal offense per se, and would be punishable by a private lawsuit.
22 posted on 04/14/2005 3:43:12 PM PDT by whereasandsoforth (Stamp out liberals with the big boot of truth)
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To: Borges
The claim is that existing Illinois law says you don't have to do things that violate your religion. Ergo, BSovitch's executive order is just so much wind, unenforceable, and contrary to sound public policy.

You might give up your job with a snit fit, but not everybody does that. Some stand and fight.

23 posted on 04/14/2005 7:10:19 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: muawiyah

When your religious customs contradict the core of what your job is...giving prescribed drugs to people then it seems to be a different issue. Unless they made that concern known before accepting the job and were hired with that exception in mind.


24 posted on 04/14/2005 7:27:19 PM PDT by Borges
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To: Borges

No, in Illinois people take the jobs with the understanding that existing law protects them. BSOvitch, the Governor, is trying to evade the law. He is a criminal who should be impeached, prosecuted, and tossed aside like so much garbage.


25 posted on 04/14/2005 7:30:42 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: Daisy4
A very good point here. Nurses and doctors do not have to participate in a procedure that violates their personal religious convictions such as abortion.

So a doctor could get a job in an abortion mill and then refuse to perform abortions, without risk of getting fired?

26 posted on 04/14/2005 7:37:27 PM PDT by supercat ("Though her life has been sold for corrupt men's gold, she refuses to give up the ghost.")
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To: muawiyah
No, in Illinois people take the jobs with the understanding that existing law protects them.

Given that Illinois is a hire-at-will state, I can't really quite understand such expectation. Are you suggesting that if a pharmacist was worried about being fired for some reason, all he'd have to do would be to refuse to fill these precriptions and then he'd be fire-proof?

27 posted on 04/14/2005 7:39:43 PM PDT by supercat ("Though her life has been sold for corrupt men's gold, she refuses to give up the ghost.")
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To: supercat
Sounds like that's the claim in the lawsuit.

"At Will" does not mean you can violate the law.

28 posted on 04/14/2005 7:45:53 PM PDT by muawiyah
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To: supercat

So a doctor could get a job in an abortion mill and then refuse to perform abortions, without risk of getting fired?



A good doctor wouldn't take a job in an abortion mill to begin with because he/she is in the profession to save lives, not take them, but to answer your question, doctors can pick and choose their patients, and the same with nurses.


29 posted on 04/14/2005 7:55:57 PM PDT by Daisy4
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To: Daisy4
A good doctor wouldn't take a job in an abortion mill to begin with because he/she is in the profession to save lives, not take them, but to answer your question, doctors can pick and choose their patients, and the same with nurses.

If a doctor were to take such a job, and then refuse to perform any abortions, would the facility not have the right to fire him? If it didn't, that would seem an easy way to shut down abortion mills.

30 posted on 04/14/2005 7:59:04 PM PDT by supercat ("Though her life has been sold for corrupt men's gold, she refuses to give up the ghost.")
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To: supercat

If a doctor were to take such a job, and then refuse to perform any abortions, would the facility not have the right to fire him? If it didn't, that would seem an easy way to shut down abortion mills.



It would go before the medical ethics committee at the hospital, and the doctor would win. Trust me.


31 posted on 04/14/2005 8:01:51 PM PDT by Daisy4
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To: Daisy4

If the hospital were looking for a doctor to perform abortions they would tell him that at the interview and he would be hired on those conditions.


32 posted on 04/14/2005 8:05:40 PM PDT by Borges
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To: Borges

If the hospital were looking for a doctor to perform abortions they would tell him that at the interview and he would be hired on those conditions.



The majority of your OB/GYN M.D's are not in the business to do abortions at will, unless the mother's life is at risk. In response to your question, if a hospital is looking for a M.D. to do abortions, the candidate will not necessarily be told that in an interview, because OB/GYN M'D' do many types of surgeries. Usually, the hospital looks at the candidates qualifications to perform OB/GYN surgeries. A doctor can refuse to do an abortion, and a nurse can refuse to participate in it. The hospital will just get a willing doctor to do the abortion, if an ethical one refuses. That's why hospitals have medical/ethics committess and some hospitals will not even allow abortions to be done at their facility, unless the mother's life is at risk.


33 posted on 04/14/2005 8:34:51 PM PDT by Daisy4
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To: organdonor

"So get another job."

I got a better idea, why don't you go back to your original forum (like D.U.).


34 posted on 04/19/2005 8:53:22 AM PDT by dbehsman (One Wellstone memorial (rave party) is enough, thank you!)
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