Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Supreme Court Denies Review In Washington State Pharmacy Case

The U.S. Supreme Court today denied review in Storman's Inc. v. Wiesman,  (Docket No. 15-682, cert. denied 6/28/2016), but over a 15-page dissent to the denial of certiorari written by Justice Alito and joined by Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Thomas. (Order List, scroll to pg. 7). In the case, the 9th Circuit upheld rules of the Washington Pharmacy Quality Assurance Commission that provide only limited accommodation to pharmacists and pharmacies that object on religious grounds to filling prescriptions for emergency contraception. The rules require pharmacies to deliver all prescriptions, even if the owner has a religious objection. An individual pharmacist with religious objections may refuse to fill a prescription only if another pharmacist working for the pharmacy does so. (See prior posting.)  In his dissent, Justice Alito argued in part:
there is much evidence that the impetus for the adoption of the regulations was hostility to pharmacists whose religious beliefs regarding abortion and contraception are out of step with prevailing opinion in the State.
Washington Post reports on today's action by the Supreme Court. [Thanks to Marty Lederman via Religionlaw for the lead.]