On Target

I’m just going to paste the mail I got from Target here in its entirety and ask this question: Does this mean I can’t shop at Target anymore?

Dear Target Guest;

In our ongoing effort to provide great service to our guests, Target consistently ensures that prescriptions for the emergency contraceptive Plan B are filled. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 also requires us to accommodate our team members’ sincerely held religious beliefs.

In the rare event that a pharmacist’s beliefs conflict with filling a guest’s prescription for the emergency contraceptive Plan B, our policy requires our pharmacists to take responsibility for ensuring that the guest’s prescription is filled in a timely and respectful manner, either by another Target pharmacist or a different pharmacy.

The emergency contraceptive Plan B is the only medication for which this policy applies. Under no circumstances can the pharmacist prevent the prescription from being filled, make discourteous or judgmental remarks, or discuss his or her religious beliefs with the guest.

Target abides by all state and local laws and, in the event that other laws conflict with our policy, we follow the law.

We’re surprised and disappointed by Planned Parenthood’s negative campaign. We’ve been talking with Planned Parenthood to clarify our policy and reinforce our commitment to ensuring that our guests’ prescriptions for the emergency contraceptive Plan B are filled. Our policy is similar to that of many other retailers and follows the recommendations of the American Pharmacists Association. That’s why it’s unclear why Target is being singled out.

We’re committed to meeting the needs of our female guests and will continue to deliver upon that commitment.

Jennifer Hanson
Target Executive Offices

5 thoughts on “On Target”

  1. I think it does mean no shopping at Target. I won’t be, until this is resolved. This line seems particularly disingenuous: “Under no circumstances can the pharmacist prevent the prescription from being filled.” From what I’ve read, what this means is that Target *will* let the pharmacist refuse to fill the prescription, it just means that they’ll “make sure” you can find another pharmacist, even if it means sending you to another store (which could be miles away). And I’m sure the fundie behind the counter is going to be *real* committed to helping you out there, right?

  2. I agree with David, much as it pains me because I like shopping at Target for small appliances and odds-n-ends. I don’t believe that the Civil Rights Act applies here because Plan B is not an abortifacient, it is a contraceptive – even the crazy FDA came to that conclusion. And since the fundie pharmacists are filling other contraception scrips they should be compelled to fill this one as well.

  3. Agreed, Terry. In fact, I question whether a pharmacist who does not understand the distinction between contraceptives and abortifacients is really qualified to be dispensing medication.

  4. does anyone else have a problem with people being allowed to not do their job (because of a belief) when that job saves lives, cures illness, etc.? i know this isn’t a life threatening illness but aren’t they ethically required to put personal belief aside for the good of the ill?

  5. Yes. Yes, indeed, *I* have a problem with it. It’s like Paulette said – these people aren’t qualified to be pharmacists. It’s their JOB to dispense medication, not moral platitudes.

    I’m also deeply troubled by the blantant misogyny. Equal protection, anyone?

    This irritates me as consumer, too. Target is one of the few places I liked to shop. But the other day while running errands with a friend, I insisted we go to Fred Meyer instead. I fear it was not a better choice, though I do not know.

    I firmly believe in voting with my wallet. Now I have to find out if Fred Meyer is a suitable alternative to Target. Kroger. Kroger. I have more homework to do.

    I suppose the upside of all this is that I’m seeing more money in my savings account.

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