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UK: pharmacists face attack on conscience rights

Catholic World News - August 16, 2011

New guidelines issued by the General Pharmaceutical Council may mark the beginning of the end of respect for the conscience rights of pharmacists in Great Britain.

“Until now, the conscience clause gave Catholic pharmacists the right not to compromise their beliefs, and provided invaluable protection against unethical employers who might have tried to force pharmacists to act against their conscience and supply these drugs,” said Anna Sweeting-Hempsall, a Catholic pharmacist.

“But the new guidance makes it clear employers have the right to choose not to employ pharmacists with a conscientious objection, or to impose contractual obligations which take precedence over the rights of conscience,” she continued. “In other words, the conscience clause is now meaningless, and Catholic pharmacists who cannot accept being party to attacks on unborn life are virtually unemployable.”

“Even if a pharmacist does manage to find a job under a sympathetic employer, the guidance states that the pharmacist must still ‘refer patients to alternative service providers’, which is still an unacceptable level of involvement for Catholics,” Sweeting-Hempsall added.

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  • Posted by: wsw33410 - Aug. 16, 2011 10:53 PM ET USA

    If you are interested in the UK affairs, please read Mark Steyn's exceptionally written article: http://articles.ocregister.com/2011-08-12/news/29885198_1_london-big-government-human-rights; make sure you read all pages - especially about the Police policy ... quite outrages ...

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