Christian employee takes major pharmacy chain to court over firing

Christian employee takes major pharmacy chain to court over firing

Christian employee takes major pharmacy chain to court over firing

A nurse practitioner tried unsuccessfully to get her employer to reverse its course. Instead, she was fired – and now she's suing CVS after it decided to no longer accommodate her religious beliefs.

Robyn Strader lives in the Dallas area and worked at a CVS MinuteClinic® where she says she had a longstanding (six-plus years) religious accommodation for prescribing contraception. Attorney Christine Pratt is with First Liberty Institute, one of the law firms representing Strader.

"They had accommodated her without any problems – no complaints whatsoever, no issues," Pratt tells AFN. "She has religious objections to prescribing contraception and abortifacients … and that never was a problem until CVS suddenly changed its policy."

The attorney explains that CVS apparently decided it no longer wanted accommodate such objections any longer.

Pratt, Christine (First Liberty Institute) Pratt

"[Our client] just sort of woke up one day and they said from now on every single nurse practitioner has to be able to do anything, [perform] any services that they offer, prescribe whatever drugs they offer related to pregnancy prevention – and if she couldn't do that, she was fired."

When Strader said she could not violate her religious beliefs, CVS fired her in October last year.

Pratt explains that prior to the firing, the pharmacy chain ignored not only written requests from Strader asking CVS to please continue honoring her religious accommodation, but also a demand letter from First Liberty.

"[They] never responded until after she was fired," the attorney continues. "And we did not hear from them until the next month [when] they basically said Yeah, pregnancy prevention is a really big deal to us and there will be no religious accommodations related to pregnancy prevention services."

The law firm Boyden Gray & Associates is also involved in the case on behalf of Strader.

AFN is seeking comment from CVS.