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Americans United for Life: Ninth Circuit Ruling on Pharmacists Endangers Fundamental Freedoms
Date:7/10/2009

CHICAGO, July 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Fundamental American freedoms suffered a blow on Wednesday when the Ninth Circuit ruled that an administrative rule of the Washington Board of Pharmacy took precedence over individual freedom of conscience.

The Ninth Circuit's decision in Stormans v. Selecky, overturning a lower-court decision blocking a draconian rule of the Washington Board of Pharmacy, means pharmacists in Washington will now be forced to provide RU-486 (the abortion pill), Plan B (the "morning-after" pill), and contraceptives without regard to their religious, moral, or ethical beliefs. The lower court had enjoined the rule while litigation over the rule's constitutionality continued.

AUL President & CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest said of the decision, "When a state steps in and forces healthcare professionals to provide services contrary to their religious, moral, or ethical beliefs, it is a loss for liberty and undermines the Constitution itself."

AUL assisted the plaintiffs' attorney in coordinating amicus brief support and also filed a brief on behalf of nineteen Washington Senators and Representatives, arguing that the U.S. Constitution and Supreme Court decisions provide strong freedom of conscience protections for all healthcare professionals. The brief also demonstrated that the Washington state officials blatantly ignored a long-standing state law protecting freedom of conscience of healthcare professionals.

AUL's brief is available at http://www.aul.org/xm_client/client_documents/briefs/WA_ROC_StormansVSelecky.pdf.

AUL Vice President of Legal Affairs Denise Burke said, "This is a tre
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SOURCE Americans United for Life
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