Religious Employees Reportedly Fired for Not Receiving COVID-19 Vaccine, Sue Massachusetts Pharmaceutical Company

Religious Employees Reportedly Fired for Not Receiving COVID-19 Vaccine, Sue Massachusetts Pharmaceutical Company

Religious employees of a major pharmaceutical company have sued in Massachusetts, claiming their employer ordered them to be vaccinated against their beliefs.

Norm Pattis, an attorney who represents controversial political commentator Alex Jones, filed a lawsuit on Thursday representing Takeda Pharmaceuticals employees alleging their employer discriminated against their religious beliefs, which are protected by the title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, when they refused the COVID -19 vaccine.

“In response to the global pandemic caused by the spread of various strains of COVID-19, defendant, a pharmaceutical company, elected to create a company-wide policy requiring vaccination against potential infection with COVID-19. 19 of current and prospective employees,” reads the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court in Massachusetts.

Tekeda Pharmaceutical Co. signage is displayed outside the company’s building in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S., Friday, August 5, 2016. (Scott Eisen/Bloomberg via Getty Images/Getty Images)

According to the complaint, the company offered its employees the option of requesting a waiver from receiving the vaccine, but ultimately denied justifying one.

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“Defendants created a company-wide vaccination policy with a tiered process to request a religious exemption. All field employees were required to be vaccinated and submit proof of vaccination to Takeda by July 1. November 2021,” it read.

“Takeda rarely, if ever, finds an employee’s religious beliefs ‘sincere’ enough to warrant an exemption. When it cannot contradict a believer’s claims on the grounds of insincerity, Takeda then claims that accommodating an employee’s or potential employee’s religious beliefs would constitute an undue hardship on its business. The result is that Takeda almost never grants religious exemptions, in violation of Title VII,” the complaint adds.

The complaint names several employees – Lisa Joy Amoson, Robb Huck, Troby Lane Parrish, Alecia Ramsey, Larry Harold Savage, Jillyn Schmidt, Sandra Salazar Silva, Britt Harold Singleton, Susan Welch – who were allegedly fired for their refusal to get vaccinated.

A photo of medical vials and syringes

Medical bottles and a syringe are seen with the Takeda Pharmaceutical logo displayed on a screen in the background in this illustrative photo taken in Krakow, Poland November 10, 2022. (Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images/Getty Images)

Employees maintained a religious belief not to use the coronavirus vaccine because some of them were “developed in part through the use of aborted fetal stem cells”.

FactCheck.org confirmed the use of fetal tissue in the development of the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, saying the vaccines were “tested in cell lines made long ago from an aborted fetus.” This process occurred at an “early stage of development”.

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The Johnson & Johnson vaccine was also “made using a cell line derived from aborted fetal tissue”, he reported.

Their report clarified that these tissues are not present in the vaccine:

“None of the three licensed or approved COVID-19 vaccines contain fetal tissue,” he wrote.

A photo of a Takeda installation

The illustration photo shows the Takeda facilities at the Takeda Pharmaceutical Company production site, in Lessines, on Monday May 23, 2022. (DAVID STOCKMAN/BELGA MAG/AFP via Getty Images/Getty Images)

And: “Neither fetal cells nor fetal tissue, however, are present in any of the vaccines, and no new abortions have been implicated in making any aspect of the vaccines possible.”

Yet these Christian employees claimed that using the vaccines would violate their beliefs because they said their bodies were “temples of the Holy Spirit,” citing the language of the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians.

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The plaintiffs seek unspecified compensatory damages, including lost wages and legal fees.

We the Patriots, USA, Inc., a nonprofit public interest law firm, is funding the litigation.

“Our fervent hope is that this trial will bring to light the fact that so many people continue to suffer as a result of the decisions that have been made over the past two years. For them, the covid crisis is far from over. We are confident that we will achieve a victory for religious freedom that will ensure that discrimination against people with religious beliefs opposed to certain vaccinations will never be justified in the eyes of the law,” the firm said in a statement.

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