Veganism as Religion?

January 17th, 2013 by JBWK

It’s possible, according to a federal court in Ohio.

A nurse in Ohio claimed her sincerely held belief in veganism justified her refusal of a flu vaccine her employer, a hospital, required of all employees. She was fired after refusing the vaccine, which contains animal by-product. The lawsuit claims her firing violated Title VII based on her religious beliefs.

The court refused to dismiss the lawsuit after the employer argued that veganism isn’t a religion. The judge said it’s possible as long as the conviction is sincerely held with the strength of religious views.

But it’s also important not to read too much into the ruling: the merits of case, including any evidence of a legitimate basis for the vaccine requirement, must still be presented at trial.

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