lunes, 27 de julio de 2015

Religious Freedom:The law is “neutral” and “generally applicable” — it doesn’t specifically target the practice of religion — so citizens must obey it, regardless of their religious beliefs

Court Tells Family-Run Pharmacy It Must Provide Contraception Despite Religious Objections


The Stormans family, which owns and operates Ralph’s Thriftway in Washington state, can no longer refuse to fill the prescriptions while referring customers to other pharmacies.

Owners of a pharmacy in Washington state must provide the morning-after contraceptive pill against their religious beliefs, after a federal appeals court upheld a state mandate that they do so.

The July 23 decision is "unfortunate," stated Luke Goodrich, deputy general counsel of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, on Thursday. “The government has no business punishing citizens solely because of their religious beliefs.”

At issue is a 2005 state law that mandates pharmacies provide the morning-after and week-after contraceptive pills to customers even if they religiously object to doing so. Individual employees may recuse themselves from filling such prescriptions if they have a religious objection, but another employee must be present to fill the prescription.

Pharmacies cannot simply refuse to fill the prescriptions while referring customers to other pharmacies that can do so, as the plaintiffs, owners of Ralph’s Thriftway store in Olympia, had reportedly done in the past.

The Stormans family owns the pharmacy and religiously objects to providing the morning-after and week-after pills, believing that they can induce early abortions.

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