THOMAS MORE SOCIETY – The University of Colorado Anschutz School of Medicine has been hauled into federal court for discriminating against the religious beliefs of its faculty and students. Thomas More Society attorneys filed a lawsuit on September 29, 2021, in the United States District Court for the District of Colorado, on behalf of a Catholic doctor and a Buddhist student who are unable to take the school’s mandated vaccine because of sincerely and deeply held religious objections.
A Catholic pediatrician, employed by the university at the Children’s Hospital of Colorado Springs, faces imminent firing over her unwillingness to take a Covid vaccine, which she holds sincere religious objections. Thomas More Society attorneys are seeking an immediate temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction to stop the university from taking further adverse action against this dedicated doctor. A devout Buddhist who was forced out of his first-year program at the school for his religious objection to the Covid vaccine is joining the doctor in suing the university for violating his Constitutional rights.
“The University of Colorado has enacted a policy dividing its staff and students into two categories based on their religious beliefs,” explained Thomas More Society Vice President and Senior Counsel Peter Breen, “The ‘sheep’ whose religions teach the approved orthodoxy receive exemptions to the university’s Covid vaccine mandate, but the ‘goats’ who hold non-approved religious beliefs are refused exemptions, and then fired or expelled. Only those who belong to religions ‘whose teachings are opposed to all immunizations’ may ascend to the university’s ‘Valhalla.’ All others, including the plaintiffs here—a Catholic and a Buddhist—must be cast out.”
Breen added that “The university’s foray into theology has gone even further, with its administrators probing and debating the religious beliefs of its staff and students, rendering value judgments on believers in an inquisition that further violates the First Amendment.”
The University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus is the academic health sciences campus in Aurora, Colorado, that houses the University of Colorado’s six health sciences-related schools and colleges. Effective September 1, 2021, the university enacted and enforced a policy that all students, employees, and other individuals “who currently or may in the future access any CU Anschutz facility or participate in any CU Anschutz program” or otherwise interact with members of the Anschutz community “regardless of location” must “become fully vaccinated against Covid-19 with a vaccine that has been approved by the World Health Organization.”
The plaintiffs are proceeding under pseudonyms. According to the lawsuit, Dr. Jane Doe is a devout Catholic physician who holds a master’s degree in Catholic bioethics. Because of the Covid vaccines’ reliance on fetal cell strains derived from aborted fetal tissue, in development or testing, she believes that receiving the shot would violate her deeply held religious beliefs that abortion is a grave sin.
Mr. John Doe, a Buddhist and medical student, avoids products developed through the killing or harming of animals (including human beings) as he seeks to live a life consistent with the “five precepts” of Buddhism. The undeniable connection of authorized Covid vaccinations to aborted children prohibit his ability to comply with the school’s unconstitutional mandate.
Attorneys for the Dr. Jane Doe and Mr. John Doe are Peter Breen, Michael McHale, and Martin Whittaker of the Thomas More Society and Joseph Brown and Theresa Lynn Sidebotham of Telios Law PLLC, of Monument, Colorado.
Read the Verified Complaint filed September 29, 2021, with the United States District Court for the District of Colorado in Jane Doe, M.D., and John Doe v. The University of Colorado, et al. here.
SOURCE Thomas More Society