HHS: VT medical center illegally forced nurse to help perform abortion


Wednesday, August 28, 2019

The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Denise Burke regarding Wednesday’s announcement by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights that it is giving the University of Vermont Medical Center 30 days to change its policies after it broke the law by forcing a Catholic nurse to assist in an abortion:

“Medical professionals should never be forced to sacrifice their commitment to protecting life to serve those in need. That’s why protecting the freedom to live and work consistent with one’s conscience is critical: It is at the heart of what motivates many who enter the medical field, a profession full of individuals who dedicate their lives to healing and doing no harm. Unfortunately, nurses, doctors, and other health care providers—including ADF clients like Sandra Rojas, Fe Esperanza Racpan Vinoya and Cathy DeCarlo—have faced government discrimination and have even lost their jobs because of their commitment to saving life. We commend the Trump administration and HHS’s Office for Civil Rights for investigating and taking corrective action against the University of Vermont Medical Center for its flawed policies and for working to ensure the civil rights and conscience rights of all Americans are protected.”

On May 9, 2018, a University of Vermont Medical Center nurse represented by the American Center for Law and Justice filed a conscience and religious discrimination complaint with OCR against the Burlington, Vermont, medical center, which receives HHS funds. OCR established an illegal pattern of behavior at the medical center during its investigation of the nurse’s complaint.
 
Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith.
 
# # #