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Thursday, 22 May 2008

Pill of rights

That little pill has again provoked religious fervour. As if we didn't have enough encroachments on our freedoms, Muslims are telling us we can't take the morning-after pill.

The latest lunacy is in Greater Manchester, where a couple, an adult couple, two grown-up people, Chris Mellett and Kay Walsh, went to a Sainsbury's pharmacy in Denton, and the Muslim pharmacist told them he wouldn't dispense the pill because it was against his religion.

Against his religion! Why on earth are these people allowed to work as pharmacists in this country if they can't do the job? Well, it's because the supine Royal Pharmaceutical Society allows the superstitious to refuse to do their job if they believe their chosen sky fairy believes it evil. To put it in more polite terms, as this story in the Manchester Evening News has it, "The society's ethics code says if the morning-after pill is against a pharmacist's personal, religious or moral beliefs they are within their rights not to supply it."

And to hell with the ethics of allowing people to buy what it is their lawful right to buy and what they expect to be able to buy when they go to a chemist's counter. If Sainsbury's really, really insist on allowing this individual to continue to work on their counter, why don't they just put up a big sign saying, "Mr So-and-so is our dispensing chemist today, so, if you wish to purchase certain products, tough shit"?

Kaye Walsh, a mother of two, said, "I was absolutely flabbergasted. I'm a 36-year-old woman, not a child. I respect other people's religions, but when it affects my life it's not on." And her partner, Chris Mellett, 29, said, "[W]hy should we be discriminated against because of someone else's religion? It's my right to buy that pill."

Walsh added, "Surely the pharmacist has a duty of care. If religion comes into it he should change his job."

Or just be fired.


boogly woogly said...

See what happened here was some woman asked someone to violate his religious principals. He refused to bow to Mammon, so she went to the papers. Presumably the grown woman knows what happens when you play with sex. He has every right to stay out of any violence toward new life.

Android666 said...

But people go to the counter expecting to get what they believe the counter is there to sell them. Why should religion get in the way of that? You don't set up a deli, say, and then refuse to sell meat on Fridays. It can get ridiculous, and that's why this guy should resign.

Oooogerly boogly said...

lol, srsly tho, what r u on,? some guy shuld trade his soul over a sainsburies reciept? u, sir, are the ridicuoulous one and have gey hair.

Anonymous said...

straight up.. the man is in the wrong job if he cannot dispense medicines based on personal belief.

its absolute rubbish.. i also now hear that the pharmacist has pressed charges for racism after the shopper challenged his reasons.

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Anonymous said...

I have to say, that knowing the people concerned they defended the Pharmacist from the beginning by stating that law needs to be changed to ensure that nobody has to defend their own religous beliefs and that procedures should be put in place within Employment law to ensure that anyone is not put in this position again. I think people are far to quick to jump on a band wagon and people should see it for what it is. This was about employment law and how it is not protecting those that have beliefs but yet out own country allow them to be put in the firing line. Well done UK.


Anonymous said...

I too am posting as anonymous, but only because to not generally blog and have not signed up with any of these ID things. I read of this case and followed it up, the chap has been convicted and fined £175 plus plus.Before I retired I worked for a chain of pharmacies in Canada and we too had one of those idiots. We would never go against anyone's religion bu in the weeks following this event he was late 3 times, our chief pharmacist went through his records and actually found a presrciption mistake and that was totally unacceptable and we had to let him go. Perhaps Sainbury's will also have an efficient chief pharmacist.