For those of us in the workplace, few things are more encouraging than a raise—and nothing is more discouraging than losing your job.
But imagine experiencing both over the course of three days. And imagine knowing why: you were rewarded for your good work—and fired for your faith.
That was the case for Paige Casey, a nurse practitioner in Virginia. Read on to learn more about her story.
Who is Paige Casey?
For over three years, Paige served as a nurse practitioner at a CVS MinuteClinic location in Northern Virginia.
Paige is a devout Catholic who adheres to the historic tenets of her faith—one of which is the belief that life begins at conception. Because of that religious belief, Paige cannot in good conscience participate in abortion services, including prescribing abortion-causing drugs.
And Paige was upfront about that with CVS. During her orientation, she notified her employer of her religious beliefs and later completed a form describing those convictions.
That seemed to put the matter to rest. CVS accommodated Paige’s religious convictions and for three years never required her to prescribe or administer hormonal contraception or any other abortion-causing drug.
Paige’s record at work was spotless. Throughout her years of employment as a nurse practitioner, she didn’t receive a single complaint about her accommodation from coworkers, patients, or supervisors.
But things changed in 2021.
In August 2021, CVS announced that it would no longer accommodate employees with religious convictions against prescribing hormonal contraceptives and other abortion-causing drugs.
At CVS’s instruction, Paige resubmitted her accommodation form along with a letter reiterating her beliefs.
In March 2022, Paige’s supervisor confirmed what the letter had stated: CVS was discontinuing Paige’s accommodation.
On March 25, Paige spoke with her supervisor on the phone to restate her religious beliefs once more.
On March 27, she was given a performance-based raise.
And on March 29, she was fired.
What’s at stake?
Paige’s firing was a direct violation of her freedom of conscience. Virginia law clearly states that no one can be denied employment because they object to participating in procedures that result in abortion.
But Paige’s case is about much more than just one nurse practitioner. If CVS is allowed to defy the law and fire Paige for her beliefs, other employees risk punishment for their beliefs, too.
And that should concern all of us. Every American should have the freedom to operate according to their ethical and religious beliefs. And that principle is deeply rooted in U.S. Supreme Court precedent: in 2020, for example, the Supreme Court ruled that pro-life nuns should not be forced to provide abortifacients and other drugs that violate their faith in their employee health plans.
- September 2018: Paige Casey was hired as a nurse practitioner for a CVS MinuteClinic in Virginia.
- March 2022: Paige was fired from her job for her religious beliefs.
- August 2022: ADF attorneys filed a lawsuit against CVS on behalf of Paige.
The bottom line
Major corporations cannot defy the law and fire health care professionals who want to work consistently with their faith.