Pharmacist sues Walgreens over Plan-B firing

February 19, 2014

A Christian pharmacist in Tennessee has filed a federal lawsuit against Walgreens claiming the chain fired him for refusing to sell the Plan B morning after pill.

A Christian pharmacist in Tennessee has filed a federal lawsuit against Walgreens claiming the chain fired him for refusing to sell the Plan B morning after pill.

According to a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Nashville, Phillip Hall was fired in August because he refused to sell a drug he found “sinful and repugnant to his sincerely held religious beliefs.”

A Walgreens spokesperson said company policy allows pharmacists and other employees to refer customers to a colleague or manager if they have a moral objection to a sale. The spokesperson would not comment further on the lawsuit.

In June of 2013, FDA lifted its restrictions and allowed Plan B to be sold over the counter. Prior to the change, it had only been available behind the counter.

The lawsuit claims that when the first shipment of over-the-counter Plan B arrived at the location where Hall worked, he paid $324 to purchase the entire supply and then disposed of it. He was fired two weeks later.

 

 

“This was not a decision that was easy for him to make, but one that is firmly grounded in his religious convictions,” Larry Crain, Hall’s lawyer, told the Tennessean. Crain said Hall had worked at Walgreens since 1997 and was a deacon at a Baptist church.

Prior to his firing and the FDA changes, Hall claims that his bosses had allowed him not to sell Plan B due to his religious objections. He said pharmacists were eventually told that they had to stock and sell the drug.

Hall claims he purchased the shipment of Plan B because it was mislabeled. He said he was told “it was part of his job duties to sell Plan B” and that was the reason for his firing.