Illinois Court Rules Pharmacists May Reject Plan B

08 Aug Illinois Court Rules Pharmacists May Reject Plan B

By Peter J. Smith

SPRINGFIELD, Illinois, August 3, 2007 ( – Illinois pharmacists are not obligated to violate their consciences and dispense Plan-B and “emergency contraceptives” according to this week’s ruling by a federal judge.

U.S. District Judge Jeanne Scott ruled Tuesday that Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich’s executive order in April 2005 requiring pharmacies “without delay” to provide Plan-B and other abortifacient “emergency contraceptives” mandated store owners to provide it, but did not mean that pharmacists themselves had to violate their conscience and religious beliefs by dispensing it.

Scott’s decision means that a discrimination lawsuit by pharmacist Ethan Vandersand can proceed against retail giant Wal-Mart, which contended it had a legal obligation to punish incompliant pharmacists under the executive order. Wal-Mart asked for a dismissal of the case Ethan Vandersand v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. on the basis that Illinois conscience legislation did not apply to pharmacists or exempt them from dispensing drugs that conflict with their religious views…

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