Yet another example of a service provider’s “religious beliefs” and “conscience” preventing them from providing a key healthcare requirement to a member of the public.
The 29 year old woman was reportedly “stunned” and “gobsmacked” when she asked for the pill (for which she had a prescription) and was told that she would have to go to another shop in town as the pharmacist wouldn’t fulfil the prescription because she had religious objections.
The mother says just moments before she was refused the pill, the same member of staff had served methadone to a heroin addict.
It’s an unclear and emotive issue, but quite simply I’d argue that if Boots want to allow their employees to exercise their conscience, they need to ensure that at least one member of staff per shift is prepared to fill all doctors’ prescriptions and provide a full service to the public. Otherwise, they need to make it clear to customers that they reserve the right to refuse service, depending on the personal perspectives of their employees.
And the public can make up their mind as to whether they want to spend their money at Boots.
What if you don’t live in a major city? What if there is only one pharmacist in town? Why should their belief in one particular religion prevent you from accessing medication that a doctor has approved?
I’d argue it’s wrong. Quite wrong.