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Trial begins for woman who sued after being denied morning-after pill
Posted by: Speedy
Date: July 31, 2022 08:39PM
[www.startribune.com]

In a case believed to be the first of its kind in the nation, an Aitkin County jury this week will decide whether the human rights of a rural Minnesota woman were violated when her local pharmacist refused to fill a prescription for emergency contraception.

Andrea Anderson, a mother of five from McGregor, Minn., sought a morning-after pill after a condom broke during sex. Her pharmacist, citing his beliefs, refused to fill the prescription. She sued under the Minnesota Human Rights Act, which prohibits discrimination based on sex, including issues related to pregnancy and childbirth.

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In January 2019, Anderson got a prescription for Ella, an emergency contraceptive. According to a report filed with the court by an expert witness, Ella is not an abortion pill, but works by delaying or preventing ovulation during the menstrual cycle in which it's taken, and is more effective when taken sooner after intercourse.

George Badeaux, a pharmacist for nearly 40 years and then-manager of the Thrifty White in McGregor, told Anderson that he couldn't fill the prescription because of his beliefs, according to court documents.

He said another pharmacist scheduled to work the next day could fill it, but that a predicted snowstorm might prevent the other pharmacist from getting to work. Badeaux offered to send the prescription to a pharmacy in Brainerd, more than 50 miles away.

At that point, according to a deposition, Anderson became angry and ended the phone call, saying, "I am going to do something about this."

After being denied her prescription by Badeaux and Thrifty White, Anderson sought to have it filled at a CVS pharmacy in Aitkin, Minn. According to court records, a CVS pharmacy technician said Anderson's prescription couldn't be filled there and falsely told Anderson that she couldn't get it filled in Brainerd, either. Anderson's lawsuit originally included CVS as a defendant, but the parties reached a settlement.

Anderson eventually got her prescription filled at a Walgreens pharmacy in Brainerd, making the round-trip of more than 100 miles in wintry conditions that had resulted in at least one serious vehicle accident in the area.

According to court filings, Anderson later called the owner of the Thrifty White pharmacy and complained. The owner, Matt Hutera, then called Badeaux and was "hot" about the situation, Badeaux testified, telling him he should have filled the prescription.

Badeaux has declined to dispense contraceptive drugs three other times in his career, he testified, believing that the drugs would cause an abortion. In court documents, Badeaux said his objection to dispensing Ella was because it could possibly prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in the wall of the uterus.

Doing so, he said, would prevent "the new DNA, the new life, from being able to continue to live and grow. It is similar to removing all care from a newborn child by throwing it out the backdoor into the woods."

According to scientific testimony in the case, emergency contraceptives such as Ella and Plan B are not the same as the so-called "abortion pill" — which actually is a combination of two medicines that do end a pregnancy by causing the woman's body to empty her uterus, expelling the implanted egg.

An important legal distinction in this case is its filing under the state's Human Rights Act. In a pretrial order, Aitkin County District Judge David Hermerding ruled that Badeaux cannot raise federal constitutional issues such as freedom of religion at the trial.

"The issue for the jury is not defendant's constitutional rights," the judge wrote. "It is whether he deliberately misled, obfuscated and blocked Ms. Anderson's path to obtaining Ella."

Badeaux will be allowed to explain his religious beliefs to the jury, the judge ruled, "but not in such a manner as to confuse the jury into thinking this is a religious freedom contest."



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: Trial begins for woman who sued after being denied morning-after pill
Posted by: pdq
Date: July 31, 2022 08:47PM
The guy’s in the wrong line of work.
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Re: Trial begins for woman who sued after being denied morning-after pill
Posted by: mattkime
Date: July 31, 2022 08:59PM
How long will it take for this to get to the supreme court?



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Re: Trial begins for woman who sued after being denied morning-after pill
Posted by: Marc Anthony
Date: July 31, 2022 09:07PM
This guy is like a bartender with moral objections to serving alcohol.



Le poète doit vivre beaucoup, vivre dans tous les sens. - Verlaine
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Re: Trial begins for woman who sued after being denied morning-after pill
Posted by: gadje
Date: August 01, 2022 01:33AM
Quote
Marc Anthony
This guy is like a bartender with moral objections to serving alcohol.

That’s next. Then prohibition. The pendulum has swung full circle.
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Re: Trial begins for woman who sued after being denied morning-after pill
Posted by: Lemon Drop
Date: August 01, 2022 09:37AM
Just for clarity of the thread title, it is the pharmacist on trial, not the woman denied the contraception.

Ms. Anderson is the plaintiff, and I hope she wins big.
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Re: Trial begins for woman who sued after being denied morning-after pill
Posted by: NewtonMP2100
Date: August 01, 2022 01:03PM
....there's got to be......a morning after......



_____________________________________

I reject your reality and substitute my own!
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Re: Trial begins for woman who sued after being denied morning-after pill
Posted by: Bill in NC
Date: August 01, 2022 01:54PM
So did the defendant file to change to federal court and that was denied?
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