by Jorge Gomez • 4 min read
Does CVS have a problem with religious employees? It seems so. First Liberty is now representing another nurse practitioner fired for her religious beliefs.
We filed a federal lawsuit this week on behalf of Gunna Kristofersdottir. She worked for CVS MinuteClinic in Tequesta, Florida. For about eight years, the company granted her religious accommodation from prescribing any medication for the purpose of pregnancy prevention. On the rare occasion a patient asked for such a prescription, she referred them to another CVS MinuteClinic provider who satisfied the request.
In August 2021, CVS abruptly announced that it was revoking all religious accommodations that allowed providers to refrain from providing pregnancy prevention services. In March 2022, the company fired Gunna.
“After accommodating Gunna for several years without a single complaint, CVS fired her because it simply did not like her religious beliefs,” said First Liberty attorney Stephanie Taub. “It is illegal to issue a blanket revocation of all religious accommodations when it is so easy for CVS to accommodate its employees. CVS is sending a message that religious health care workers are not welcome and need not apply.”
“Our employment laws protect religious freedom in the workplace,” added volunteer attorney Jonathan Berry, Managing Partner at Boyden Gray PLLC and former head of rulemaking at the U.S. Department of Labor. “No one should have to choose between her faith and her job, especially where it would be easy to continue a longstanding religious accommodation.”
Gunna has over 20 years of experience as a nurse practitioner. She has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Iceland and a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Nevada. Prior to working for CVS, she worked as a nurse practitioner for both the U.S. Air Force and Navy, as well as for clinics in Georgia and Oklahoma.
What CVS did is not just outrageous and wrong, it’s illegal. Federal law states that if an employer can easily accommodate an employee’s religious beliefs, it must do so. It also says employers may not fire, demote, refuse a promotion or otherwise take adverse action against employees because of their religious beliefs.
But instead of following the law, CVS preferred to join the ranks of the “woke” corporations rendering religious employees second class citizens. And Gunna is far from the only health professional paying the price.
If this sounds familiar, it’s because we’re also in the middle of a federal court battle for Robyn Strader. Like Gunna, Robyn also got fired from CVS MinuteClinic because of her religious beliefs, in her case, about hormonal contraception.
And don’t forget our ongoing fight for Valerie Kloosterman. Michigan Health fired her because of her religious beliefs about gender ideology. Valerie was terminated for declining to use biology-obscuring pronouns or refer patients for “gender reassignment” drugs and procedures.
There’s no denying it. Religious discrimination in the workplace is a serious problem. We live in a time of extreme “woke” cancel culture when corporations and government employers continue to defy the law by punishing and firing workers over their beliefs and convictions.
It has to stop. And YOU can be part of the solution by giving to First Liberty.
Your gift to First Liberty today goes to help everyday Americans like Gunna, Robyn and Valerie. Every dollar you give goes a long way in helping us win for our clients who’ve been wrongfully punished or fired because of their faith.
We need to win these cases. Our clients are counting on all of us. Plus, a win for them is a win for all Americans. The result could impact countless everyday American workers—like YOU, your children and your grandchildren.